A CARDROSS songstress has been invited to appear at a prestigious international festival - but not the kind you might expect.

Ainsley Hamill will appear at the International Magic Festival in Edinburgh next month alongside a host of illusionists and other musicians.

The singer, who studies at the Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow, said her appearance will be a step in a different direction for her. She told the Reporter: "I got asked by the organisers of the festival because I'm quite good friends with one of the guys that's taking part in the show and he recommended me.

"It's still in its early stages but I think it's going to be fantastic, it will be something no one's ever done before.

"We have got all these fantastic musicians and illusionists taking part."

The singer will perform a variety of songs on the opening night of the festival to tie in with the theme of "wonderland" during the Magic Dinner and says the dramatic nature of the show is one she is familiar with. She added: "I'm mainly a singer but it's a collaborative effort.

"I used to act quite a bit, and obviously with being a singer the two go hand in hand. I do have previous experience so it's great to get back into it." Ainsley continued: "It's really exciting, the guys I'm working with are just fabulous musicians and illusionists. People won't expect what happens in the show, there's lots of little different things happening. It's still in the very early stages but it's taking shape already."

As well as her performance work in the festival, Ainsley is also lead singer in band Barluath who she describes as "traditional but with a contemporary flavour".

The band recently released its debut album, Source, and it has a big summer ahead of it. Ainsley said: "We will be doing a lot in the summer, we're playing some big festivals like Blas and supporting some big bands from the folk scene. I've just about finished my final year at the Conservatoire, performing and touring is definitely the only thing I can see myself doing."

The festival lasts from Friday, June 28 till Friday, July 5. Tickets for the festival are available from www.magicfest.co.uk or over the phone on 0131 473 2000.

Barluath's debut album, Source, is available to buy from the band's official website - www.barluath.com