AN AUSTRALIAN multi-arts practitioner is using hip-hop to engage the younger generation with the language of Gaelic.

Ariel Killick, a performance artist and workshop facilitator who is fluent in both Scottish and Irish Gaelic, is using rap music in an attempt to place Gaelic at the core of contemporary arts culture.

Inspired by other bilingual rap artists such as Die Antwoord, Killick is one of the first artists to write entire rap songs solely in Scots Gaelic. She is now on the hunt for collaborators for a full album’s worth of Gaelic hip-hop. “In terms of lyrics, I have album’s worth of material right now,” says Killick. “I tend to write down whatever comes naturally and collate it afterwards into groups and themes, whether it be personal or political.

“For example, the Highland clearances are a key issue that I write about. My family have deep roots in the west of Scotland where Gaelic culture, including the arts, has nearly been wiped out. We need to engage this generation with Gaelic through music and art – our ancestors deserve that.”

In April, The National spoke to Griogair Labhruidh, a Highland emcee who used rap as a way of bringing voice to a “dying culture”. He argued that hip-hop as a “folk art” was the perfect medium to convey the “struggles of a colonised community”.

Killick bears a similar passion, having promoted Gaelic in mediums as diverse as street theatre, circus skills, storytelling to school children and even stilt walking for over a decade.

“Gaelic art is massively underfunded in this country,” argues Killick. “There is no provision for Gaelic arts within Creative Scotland. It’s something that needs to be addressed. If people question why there should be provision for Gaelic at a Government level, you only need to look at the devastating damage that has been done to it over the past 400 years.”

Killick’s work can be sampled at

You can also find out how to get involved at the touring Pop Up Gaelic Cafe, a bilingual comedy/street theatre act.