Author Alexander McCall Smith is to have a key role in creating an opera which will be performed in 2014, as Glasgow gears up to host the Commonwealth Games.
The Scots writer will pen the libretto for a work entitled The Friendship Oratorio for Scottish Opera which it is hoped will be performed during festivities surrounding the Games.
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.
"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," Ms Hyslop said. "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.
"I am particularly pleased to have met with some of the young people in Delhi who are taking part in this project and I look forward to welcoming them to visit Scotland during the Commonwealth Games in 2014."
The countries involved in the opera are Botswana, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada, India, Australia and Scotland.
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.
Scottish Opera's director of education, Jane Davidson, who is currently in Delhi, said: "The whole team is really looking forward to continuing this hugely exciting project in India. We will be asking people of all ages to share their thoughts and experiences of friendship to help spark ideas for the musical and dramatic structure of The Friendship Oratorio.
"In 2014 a group of young people from Delhi will be invited to Scotland to join the youth chorus that will perform the final piece alongside professional artists representing all the partner countries."