Author Alexander McCall Smith to create an opera which will be performed in 2014, as Glasgow gets ready to host the Commonwealth Games.
The Scots writer will pen the words for a work entitled The Friendship Oratorio for Scottish Opera which it is hoped will be performed during festivities surrounding the Games.
Mr McCall Smith will write the words to accompany the music by composer Pippa Murphy. His text will weave in the various stories about friendship from youngsters in the seven countries, who will take part in a series of drama and music workshops.
It will feature 100 young people and emerging artists from seven Commonwealth countries and is based on their stories about what friendship means to them.
The involvement of the author behind the popular No 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series was announced by Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop during a visit to a school in Delhi, India where she met 50 young people from the city who will be taking part.
Ms Hyslop said: “I am delighted that at the heart of the Scottish team that is looking to deliver The Friendship Oratorio in 2014 is master storyteller Alexander McCall Smith.
“His libretto will provide the framework for a musical exploration of a unique aspect of human nature: the ability to bond with one another across social, economic, geographical, cultural, sexual, religious and generational divides.
The countries involved in the opera are Botswana, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, India, Australia and Scotland.