Highlands & Islands

Five things about new Gaelic drama Bannan

BBC Alba will screen its first drama Bannan from 23 September, it has been announced.

The making of the series followed a pledge in last year's annual report for the Gaelic TV channel that a lack of original drama would be tackled.

But what is Bannan about and what makes it a milestone production?

Image copyright Young Films

1. Bannan is the first Gaelic drama to be made in years.

Previous Gaelic dramas included Machair, a soap based on Lewis which was broadcast in the 1990s.

Image copyright Handout

2. Its producer has form for programme making.

Chris Young produced E4 comedy The Inbetweeners.

His production company Young Films also produced Gregory's 2 Girls and Gaelic film Seachd.

Image copyright young films

3. Bannan has been made on a tight budget.

Mr Young told BBC Alba last year: "We are making drama for half the cost of what is going out on BBC One, but we will be judged as if it is the same.

"So I have to do everything to a very high quality."

Image copyright Young Films

4. It was filmed on Skye.

Young Films is based on Skye, but this convenience of location for the production company was just one of many reasons for filming on the Misty Isle.

Skye's striking landscape of sea and mountains and its weather were others and provide a backdrop to the human drama.

Image copyright young films

5. It is about a journey.

Lead character Mairi MacDonald, played by Debbie MacKay, returns home to the island which she deserted eight years ago.

She left to escape her family and the place and "its claustrophobia and its customs".

Mairi initially returns for the funeral of a family friend.

The drama's makers said: "Mairi's journey reawakens the unresolved conflicts that are rooted in her memory of home: love and hate, past and present, suffocation and freedom."

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