|Carradale Village Hall Saturday 17th Jan 2009. |
THE FORMAT FOR A BURNS SUPPER
Chairperson's opening address
A few welcoming words start the evening and the meal commences with the Selkirk Grace
The company are asked to stand to receive the haggis. A piper then leads the chef, carrying the haggis to the top table, while the guests accompany them with a slow handclap. The chairman or invited guest then recites Burns' famous poem To A Haggis, with great enthusiasm. When he reaches the line 'an cut you up wi' ready slight', he cuts open the haggis with a sharp knife.
It's customary for the company to applaud the speaker then stand and toast the haggis with a glass of whisky.
The company will then dine. A typical Bill o' Fare would be:
Haggis warm reeking, rich wi' Champit Tatties,
Tyspy Laird (sherry trifle)
A Tassie o' Coffee
The Immortal Memory
One of the central features of the evening. An invited guest is asked to give a short speech on Burns. There are many different types of Immortal Memory speeches, from light-hearted to literary, but the aim is the same - to outline the greatness and relevance of the poet today.
Toast To The Lasses
The main speech is followed by a more light-hearted address to the women in the audience. Originally this was a thank you to the ladies for preparing the food and a time to toast the 'lasses' in Burns' life. The tone should be witty, but never offensive, and should always end on a concilliatory note.
The turn of the lasses to detail men's foibles. Again, should be humorous but not insulting.
Poem and Songs
Once the speeches are complete the evening continues with songs and poems. These should be a good variety to fully show the different moods of Burns muse. Favourites for recitations are Tam O' Shanter, Address to the Unco Guid, To A Mouse and Holy Willie's Prayer.
The evening will culminate with the company standing, linking hands and singing Auld Lang Syne to conclude the programme.