Burns Night Traditions 2017: How to Do It Right, Burns Night Supper 2017: Robert Burns and Burns Night Celebrations
Burns Night is a celebration of the Scottish Bard Robert Burns and if you’re celebrating the life of Scotland’s national bard, it’s important to know Burns Night traditions.
Piping the Guests In
If you’re having a big-time Burns Night, having a piper to welcome all the guests is the best way to kick things off. If you can’t have a piper play the tunes for whatever reasons, playing some traditional music in the background will also suffice.
Welcoming the Guests
The host or organizer offers a warm welcome to all the guests and offers an introduction to the assembled guests as well as the planned entertainment for the evening. Burns Night 2017 Recipes Traditional Recipes Drinks
Selkirk Grace is one of the Burns Night traditions. It’s a short but essential prayer that is read before the Burns Supper is ushered in. Selkirk Grace, also called the Burn’s Grace at the Kirkcudbright, is recited in Scots by all the participants.
Piping the Haggis In
Guests normally stand as the supper’s main course is brought in on a silver platter. As it’s time for toasts, whiskey is also served to all the guests to ensure that the toasts go smoothly. Traditionally, guests also clap as haggis is brought out and carried to its position at the table. The music stops, and everyone sits down in anticipation of the next tradition.
Address to Haggis
Now it’s time for the chair to seize the moment and offer a fluent reading of the Address to Haggis. One of the most popular works of Robert Burns, it is recited by the host with a knife held. On cue, the reader cuts the haggis, and in some quarters, it’s considered fun when bits of haggis fly all over the guests.
The recital of the address ends as the host raises the haggis in a triumphant fashion, to which the guests respond with a rapturous applause.
Toast to Haggis
Now it’s time for the audience to join in on the toast as the speaker prompts them to raise their glasses and shout, “To the haggis!” Then, it’s time for the main course of haggis to be served with the traditional neeps and tatties. The traditional Scottish cock-a-leekie soup is also served in some celebrations. When it comes to drinks, ale or wine is served and it’s also customary to drink the whiskey sauce or neat whiskey.
Now it’s time for some entertainment, which starts right after the meal. Usually, a singer or musician starts the entertainment by performing popular Robert Burns songs. On the other hand, the entertainment could also be a moving and gripping recital of any of the Burns poems.
To His Immortal Memory
It’s time for the keynote speaker or host to take the stage and deliver a spell-binding speech on the life and work of Robert Burns. The speech traditionally includes references to his life events, his literary genius, his poetry and politics, his highs and lows, his patriotism and his human frailty.
The speech bridges a very dangerous chasm between sparkling wit and serious intent. It is expected to paint a colorful picture of the beloved Bard of Scotland.
The speech is concluded with a toast to Robert Burns’ immortal memory.
More celebration of Burns’ poetry follows as other poems and songs are presented to complement the previous entertainment and the preceding speech.
Toasting the Lassies
One of the most important traditions and the humorous highlight of every Burns Night is the Toast to Lassies. The toast praises the modern women and their role in the world. This includes selective quotation taken from Burns’ work. Particular references to the women present make the toast even more meaningful.
Vote of Thanks
In some gatherings, a final entertainment is presented after the toast and then, the host thanks everyone for their contribution to the auspicious evening, ending with a suggestion that taxis will be arriving shortly.
Auld Lang Syne
To close the proceedings, the host invites all the guests to stand and sing aloud Auld Lang Syne, which is the most popular Burns’ work. Everyone joins hands and sings one last tribute to Burns.