The never disappointing Fringe by the Sea returns on 5 – 11 August when the circus – almost literally – rolls into town with TWO Spiegeltents pitching up in the harbour area, creating a unique festival village where the old open air swimming pool once stood.
This award winning event continues to promise something for everyone – and the organisers are again sure that the myriad of performances, concerts, talk, films and ‘happenings’ will leave the audiences breathless and clamouring for more! And this year the ‘village’ grows with a mix of ice cream, paella and cake to hand!
As ever, there will be a mix of old and new, tried and tested alongside edgy and whacky. Fringe by the Sea has built its reputation by being thoroughly eclectic and the “best small scale multi-arts festival” tag has been well earned. So The New Rope String Band launch this year’s bumper programme (Fringe First winners in Edinburgh last year) with The Blues Band back from their 2011 visit when they produced a gig that is still being talked about as ‘life-changing’ for some of the audience!
During the rest of the week, both Spiegeltents have been scheduled to run through the day with alternating offerings, the only constant being the superb quality of all. As well as The Blues Band, our headliners in the main Spiegeltent are Boy with Tape on his Face, Lucy Porter and Jenny Eclair; Elaine C Smith, the fabulous Phil Cunningham and Aly Bain; Bombskare and Dougie MacLean, whilst in the baby Spiegeltent – a very eclectic mix including comedy (Jarleth Regan, Gordon Southern and Mel Buttle), Cafe Jacques, Safehouse, Larkin Poe all the way from USA! and Jazz & Co.
PIC: ROB MCDOUGALL
This being VisitScotland’s Year of Natural Scotland, there is a whole section of the programme concentrating on wildlife and nature. There will be walks, talks by internationally reknowned photographer/author Doug Allan, beach antics and sea frolicking, including an open air visit by Orkestra del Sol, prior to their proper gig. East Lothian’s Ranger Service are leading some natural history walks –including up The Law – to augment Dave Berry’s legendary town history strolls. Hopefully a ‘mini’ archeological dig as well!
Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland said:- “Fringe by the Sea continues to bring the magic and excitement of the Fringe to North Berwick, with a number of top musicians, comedians, authors and performers guaranteed to wow audiences of all ages. 2013 is of course the Year of Natural Scotland, and what better place to celebrate than the stunning East Lothian coast. This year the festival has partnered with The Seabird Centre to create some exciting new elements for the programme, which will really showcase the stunning scenery in the local area.”
A fantastic line up of authors spread over the week include Ian Rankin, Maggie O’Farrell, Liz Lochead, Christopher Brookmyre, Ray Perman and Alistair Moffat as well as an intense day of action for Foodies is being offered – both ‘observe and learn’ as well as – of course – tasting. Jo Macsween and Chris Trotter plus special guests.
A full children’s line up of entertainment includes Mr Boom, Jo Jingles, Book Bugs and Little Voices Big Stars.
There is to be a very special Paddy’s Night Two (who says there can only be one St. Patrick’s Night) with Tim O’Leary and his band Islander, as well as open mic sessions from local bands throughout the week. Altogether something for everyone.
Councillor John McMillan, East Lothian Council spokesperson for Economic Development and Tourism said:- “We are delighted to be supporting Fringe by the Sea again this year. In East Lothian, we have a number of fabulous festivals happening throughout the year and Fringe by the Sea is very much one of the highlights of the calendar – bringing visitors from near and far to North Berwick. The programme for this year looks very exciting and there is truly something in there for everyone. I am certain this year will be the biggest and best Fringe by the Sea so far!”
Tickets will be on sale via the website and in North Berwick itself from our very own roving beach hut! The website will be the place to keep in touch for all details and those registering on the website will be given advance opportunity to buy their tickets early and before the rush – which with this line up there will surely be.
Sustainable transport campaign group Transform Scotland launch a report revealing that cycle-based tourism benefits the Scottish economy by up to £239 million a year. And calling upon politicians and business leaders to recognise and further promote cycle tourism across Scotland.
As well as making rural communities more vibrant and contributing to local economies, cycle tourism is also good for public health and for the environment, says Transform report author Ivan Zovko. Transform campaigners are pictured beside National Cycle Route 1 in Edinburgh’s Holyrood Park.
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The Mendelssohn on Mull Festival will be celebrating 25 years of musical performance this year. This free festival of chamber music takes place between 1-6 July 2013 on the island of Mull and offers an opportunity for the young musicians taking part and music lovers alike.
The musicians are invited by artistic director Levon Chilingiran, a professor at the Royal College of Music, in London. They perform in various venues, such as the tiny Creich Church seating 50 or the grandeur of Duart Castle’s Great Hall. For the young professionals, who this year will include some from Edinburgh, it is an important way to gain performance experience and hone skills with the mentorship of experienced chamber musicians, in a beautiful setting.
Participant and freelance musician, Jessica Hall, 23, from Edinburgh who plays violin, viola, clarinet and piano said: – “Living in Edinburgh was a fantastic place to enter the music profession. I was lucky enough to attend St Mary’s Music School. The city was inspiring for me musically due to its festivals. Edinburgh also hosts an international festival of the arts every Easter where people will come from all over to compete. This was a very motivating thing to look forward to and work towards.” She also cites the witnessing of music from all over the world, in all types of venues, including bars and street performances during the Edinburgh International Festival as important to her.
Jessica has won numerous awards and prizes in her home city, such as the Winifred Gavine Medal for solo violin playing, the Edinburgh Quartet Prize, in the Advanced Duet Class and was finalist in the Edinburgh Concerto Competition.
The idea of the Mull festival is to bring a new generation of musicians into contact with seasoned professional mentors in relaxed and stunning surroundings, away from the treadmill and stresses of the professional music circuit. In this regard, Jessica said :-”The festival is my number one commitment giving me the opportunity to play chamber music with wonderful mentors in such a peaceful place.”
Of the relevance these days of such a festival, she said: – “Classical music is sadly something that a lot of young people aren’t interested in – it is viewed as dated and ‘un-cool’. I hope that the festival reaches people of a younger age and shows them how varied the world of classical music can be.”
She added:-”We did get a fair amount of younger audience last year and I think the fact that the musicians are made up of young people who are obviously passionate about music and having a fantastic time performing shows them a different side to classical music that they wouldn’t have previously experienced.”
As to who might enjoy attending the festival, Jessica said: – “I couldn’t recommend this festival enough. There is something for everyone. I strongly believe that even if you are not passionate about classical music witnessing such enjoyable concerts from such young players is an experience in itself. The location of the festival is incredible. The festival grows in size every year as people come and love it and recommend it to everyone they know.”
In conclusion she said: - ”If you want a fantastic introduction to the world of classical music it’s perfect, and if you are somebody who already loves classical music then it’s the ideal venue to come and enjoy some performances of the highest quality.”
The festival is based on the island because the young composer Felix Mendelssohn made a life changing trip through Scotland to Mull, which inspired him to write ‘The Hebrides Overture, Fingal’s Cave’- one of his most famous pieces.
The young professionals are divided into three groups which workshop repertoire with experienced mentors. Jessica is in group 2.
This year’s mentors are Levon Chilingirian, Gaby Lester, Susie Mészáros, Marcia Crayford, and Stephen Orton.
Due to the popularity of some venues, start times have been staggered to allow travel to another venue if capacity is reached. Concert goers at Glengorm and Duart Castles should arrive at least 30 minutes before the start of the performances. All concerts are free of charge but an entrance fee is charged for access to Iona Abbey.
For further information about the festival, the venues and the participating musicians, visit: www.mendelssohnonmull.com
Workshop and Concert Diary 2013
Monday 1st July 2013 19.30 TOBERMORY PARISH CHURCH – All Groups
Tuesday 2nd July 2013 14.00 DERVAIG HALL – Group 3
19.30 SALEN CHURCH – Group 1
20.00 CRAIGNURE HALL – Group 2
Wednesday 3rd July 2013 19.30 SALEN CHURCH – Group 2
19.30 GLENGORM CASTLE – Group 1
20.15 MULL THEATRE – Group 3
Friday 5th July 2013 15.00 AROS HALL – Mendelssohn on Mull Music Makers 19.30 SALEN CHURCH – Classical Ceillidh – This concert will include a performance of the Mendelssohn Octet, to celebrate the Mendelssohn on Mull Festival’s 25th anniversary. Saturday 6th July 2013 19.30 ST JOHN’S CATHEDRAL, OBAN - This concert will include performances from all groups.
Group 1 - Mentor: Levon Chilingirian Haydn Op55 No2; Shostakovich 8; Mendelssohn Op18
Group 2 – Mentors: Gaby Lester and Susie Mészáros Schubert Quartettsatz in c minor ( D7030); Mozart K593; Brahms Op111
Group 3 - Marcia Crayford and Stephen Orton Mozart K575; Boccherini a cello quintet; Brahms Op18
Condé Nast, the publishers of Vogue, Vanity Fair and many other magazines, are celebrating 100 years of fashion photography. Original prints have been gathered by curator Nathalie Herschdofer to give an unique opportunity to see the work of famous names such as Erwin Blumenfeld, David Bailey and many others.
Opening on 15 June 2013, at the City Art Centre Coming into Fashion is a treat for photography lovers and fashionistas. On display is one of the very first professional photographs of supermodel Kate Moss by Corinne Day.
The exhibition is complemented by ‘Dressed to Kill: Fashion, Costume and Dress in Scottish Art’, showing how Scottish artists have captured fashion and clothing throughout time.
Trystan Davies of The Edinburgh Reporter spoke to curator Nathalie Herschdofer.
the soft-shoe-shuffle of the cocoa bean sacks,
the chattering hands, the industrious backs,
each bean a diamond, worked from the land
where a sunshine glitters like scattering sand….
(Extract from Ann Seed’s poem ‘Bean Dancing’)
Divine Chocolate and Christian Aid have announced the winners of this year’s national Divine Poetry Competition. Multiple award-winning author Geraldine McCaughrean joined us to select the poems from amongst 2000 entries which best captured the theme “Chocolate is something to cherish”. There are three age groups and this year the winner in the 17 – adult category was Ann Seed, a Houseparent atSt George’s School for Girls in Edinburgh.
As always the topic of chocolate stimulated thousands of budding poets to wax lyrical about chocolate, something they clearly love, and theFairtrade focus produced more reflective thoughts and ideas. The winners were chosen from 2000 entries, mostly from schools all over UK. The winners of both the 7-11 and 12-16 age groups were from schools in Kent.
Geraldine McCaughrean said:- “I believe the most sumptuous thing you can have in your mouth (other than chocolate) is words. So poetry and chocolate is a marriage made in heaven, and so is chocolate and Fairtrade. Bean Dancing, the wonderfully lilting poem by Ann Seed, came into its own when it was read aloud, capturing the pleasure of chocolate, and literally dancing on the page.”
Charlotte Borger, Communications Director at Divine Chocolate added:- “Our theme this year had the desired effect of making people think about what a huge part chocolate plays in our lives – whether as treats, rewards, celebrations and commiserations. Unless cocoa farmers are paid a sustainable price in the future there won’t be any more cocoa and chocolate could run out! This focused minds and produced some lovely odes to chocolate. We were delighted to have Geraldine McCaughrean with us as our special guest judge.”
All the winning and runners up poems can be found on the Divine website at www.divinechocolate.com/poetry . You can also see Geraldine McCaughrean reading the winning poems aloud.
Here is some news about my new novel – The Hanging of Margaret Dickson – published by Thames River Press on 1 June 2013. I first came across this amazing story over ten years ago and made it a personal quest of mine to write a novel about her incredible life – and death!
I researched for this novel many, many years (travelling to Musselburgh, Edinburgh, Duddingston, National Archives etc.)
The novel tells the true tale of the Musselburgh fishwife, Maggie Dickson, who was hanged at the Grassmarket, Edinburgh, 1724.
In an age when women are expected to know their place, be submissive, dutiful and chaste, Maggie Dickson, a Musselburgh fishwife, is often in trouble. She’s outspoken, promiscuous and vituperative. While her husband’s at sea, she sells her fish, sleeps with men for pleasure or money and looks after her two children. In time, her husband abandons her. Maggie quits Musselburgh and heads for Newcastle to stay with relatives.
During the winter of 1723, a fisherman finds the dead, naked body of a baby boy. Fingers are soon pointing in the direction of a stranger working in a local tavern, a woman recently estranged from her mariner husband. It is rumoured that she’s been having a passionate affair with the innkeeper’s young son, William Bell, and that he is the father of the dead child.
Maggie is arrested and taken to Edinburgh tollbooth to await trial, is found guilty and is sentenced to death. The news spreads like wildfire and, as Maggie languishes in jail, the whole city speculates whether or not she killed her child. Will she take her secret to her grave?
‘The Hanging of Maggie Dickson’ is a heartrending tale of obsession and unrequited love.
Submitted by Alison Butler
The capital’s football fans, looking for a quick ‘fix’ during the close season, have a feast of football to look forward to from Friday to Sunday.
The Edinburgh Street Football Festival will take place in the shadow of the castle, within the Ross Bandstand in Princes Street Gardens from 14-16 June 2013.
Eight Edinburgh primary schools, five U13 girls teams, six Edinburgh businesses and five Edinburgh youth projects will compete in four different tournaments coming together on finals day to play and celebrate together in their city.
Teams can be all male, all female or mixed consisting of a maximum of eight players in total. Maximum of four players per team on the court: Two halves of six minutes each plus one minute interval in between each half.
At least one player must remain in the opposition half of play. A foul will be awarded against a team where the whole team is in its own half and the referee can award a penalty against a team which is persistently time-wasting.
The winning team receives three points. The losing team zero. If a match ends in a draw, it is decided by a sudden-death penalty shoot-out until one team has a one goal advantage after both teams have taken the same number of penalty kicks.
In matches decided by a penalty shoot-out the winning team gets two points and the losing team gets one point.
Organiser Scott Moncrieff told The Edinburgh Reporter:- “This is the first of hopefully many such events throughout the country. Fans are advised to go to the grandstand which holds 230, plus there are blue seats to the side, taking the attendance up to around four hundred.
“We received funding from the Scottish Football Partnership and the National Lottery ‘Young Start’ Programme and our objective is to get youngsters involved in sport and healthier.
“We have received sponsorship from Sykes Global for this event, and receive money from the businesses taking part, with all funds raised going to the Homeless World Cup.
“On Sunday, a Hibs / Hearts select team, featuring Keith Wright, Michael Weir and Gordon Hunter from Hibs, and Henry Smith, Scott Crabbe and Jimmy Sandison from Hearts will play against local teams and hopefully boost the crowds.
DAY 1 FRIDAY 14TH JUNE
10am – 2pm EDINBURGH YOUTH CUP
5 Edinburgh Youth Projects compete in the group stages with the top 4 progressing to the semi-finals on Sunday.
3pm – 7pm EDINBURGH CORPORATE CUP
6 Edinburgh Businesses compete in the group stages with the top 4 progressing to the semi-finals on Sunday.
DAY 2 – SATURDAY 15TH JUNE
10am – 2pm EDINBURGH PRIMARY SCHOOLS CUP
8 Edinburgh Primary Schools compete in two groups of four with the top 2 from each group progressing to the semi-finals on Sunday.
3pm – 6pm EDINBURGH U13 GIRLS CUP
5 Edinburgh Girls’ U13 teams compete in the groups stages with the top 4 progressing to the semi-finals on Sunday.
DAY 3 – SUNDAY 16TH JUNE SEMI-FINALS AND FINALS DAY
10am – 11.30am EDINBURGH YOUTH CUP SEMI-FINALS AND FINALS
12pm – 1.30pm EDINBURGH CORPORATE CUP SEMI-FINALS AND FINALS
1.30pm – 2.30pm HIBS/HEARTS LEGENDS SELECT
2.30pm – 4.00 pm EDINBURGH PRIMARY SCHOOLS CUP SEMI-FINALS AND FINALS 4.00pm to 5.30pm EDINBURGH U13 GIRLS CUP SEMI FINALS AND FINALS.
War Horse, the critically acclaimed play based on the beloved Michael Morpurgo novel about the First World War, and one young man’s devotion to his horse, is coming to Edinburgh’s Festival Theatre next year.
The production has been seen by over three million people worldwide since its premiere at the National Theatre in 2007. War Horse is the powerful story of a young boy called Albert and his beloved horse Joey, who has been requisitioned to fight in the First World War. Caught in enemy crossfire, Joey ends up serving on both sides during the war, before ending up in no-man’s land, while Abert, not old enough to enlist, embarks on a treacherous mission to find his horse and bring him home.
A remarkable tale of courage, loyalty, friendship War Horse features ground-breaking puppetry work by South Africa’s Handspring Puppet Company, which brings breathing, galloping horses to life on the stage.
On Tuesday, Joey, the life sized horse equine puppet made an early appearance at Edinburgh Castle, before showing off his considerable talents to a specially invited audience at the Festival Theatre.
Young and old alike sat enthralled as the National Theatre’s managing director Stephen Rebbeck introduced a short film showing Michael Morpurgo explain the background to the story, before handing over to Associate Puppetry Director Finn Caldwell who has worked on the play since its early development.
Finn described the work done by Handspring Puppets to bring Joey to life, then introduced him to the audience who greeted his appearance with gasps of amazement then thunderous applause, as he made his way slowly to the stage.
Joey then showed off his talents, walking, running and jumping to roars of approval, before eventually leaving the stage. The reason for Joey’s sudden departure soon became apparent when the puppeteers who operate him, Shaun McKee (Head), Matt Tait (Heart) and Sam Clark (Hind) returned for a question and answer session with the school children in the audience.
The trio revealed that it took eight weeks rehearsing before they appeared in public but they are still perfecting their art, and also that the costume weighs 11 stones, without a rider.
Joey then returned to conduct a photo shoot with the delighted children from four Edinburgh Primary Schools, Tollcross, Wester Hailes, St Thomas’s and Preston Street.
Festival Theatre Chief Executive Duncan Hendry said:- “We are thrilled to be hosting the only Scottish performances of War Horse and delighted that audiences north of the border now have a chance to see this highly acclaimed production in Scotland. We look forward to welcoming more shows of this stature in the future.”
The production will appear at the Festival Theatre between Wednesday 22 January and Saturday 15 February 2014 as part of a 43 week tour of the UK.
Tickets costing £20-£50 are still available and can be booked via the Box Office T 0131 529 6000 or online at www.edtheatres.com
Photographs by www.jonsavagephotography.com/
CATS Awards 2013 (Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland), Traverse Theatre, 9 June 2013.
Film-maker John Byrne (centre), who made the awards at the CATS (Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland) with Blythe Duff after the awards ceremony at Edinburgh’s Traverse Theatre, Sunday 9 June 2013.
Colin Hattersley Photography
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This weekend Craigies Farm on the outskirts of the City is having an open weekend. There is sure to be plenty of fun for all the family. Activities include:-
- big, new farm machinery
- see a shepherd shear his sheep on Saturday
- meet the pig farmer and learn about his pigs
- learn how they grow the fruit
- splat the rat and other games
- great food, local meats and fresh salads
- lots of tastings in the shop
As well as that there will be plenty of chances to win some excellent prizes.
For more information visit their website at www.craigies.co.uk