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Welcome

These pages hopefully contain useful information on Edinburgh and its August festivals for all fellow punters, both established and new. It should be particularly helpful to those who are trying the festival for the first time.

Most Popular Page is A History of the Edinburgh Festivals


Edinburgh Festival 2013

Links to main news since 2012 festival
Festival launches and early feedback
Digest of links to picks and previews
Links to reviews and list of most critically acclaimed shows
Awards
Summary of punter's visit

Festival post-mortem


Edinburgh Festival 2012

Links to main news since 2011 festival
Festival launches and early feedback
Digest of links to picks and previews
Links to reviews and list of most critically acclaimed shows
Awards
Summary of punters' visit
Festival post-mortem


2014 Festival Dates for Your Diary
Festival
Festival
dates
Prog.
Launch
Public
Booking
International Festival
8 Aug-31 Aug
18 March
29 March
Fringe
1 Aug-25 Aug
5 June 6 June
Book Festival
9 Aug-25 Aug
11 June
24 June
Film Festival
18 Jun-29 Jun
May

Jazz & Blues Festival
18 Jul-27 Jul
late May

Art Festival
31 Jul-31 Aug
13 March
n/a
Magic Festival
27 Jun-4 Jul
22 April
22 April
Forest Fringe 6 Aug-17 Aug June n/a
Military Tattoo
1 Aug-23 Aug
Sep 2013
Italics indicate that dates are provisional. Confirmed dates will be given when they are announced.
Information on Fringe Venues

This section is relevant simply because there are just so many Fringe venues, some of which appear for a year or two and then promptly disappear, and occasionally reappear.

In my opinion The Stage contains the most comprehensive information on venues. It includes web site urls, maps, addresses, box office phone numbers and details of the productions. Be aware that the maps only show the approximate location of the venues.


Festival Mailing Lists and Friends / Supporters

Most festivals provide a mailing list which you can freely subscribe to. Others allow you to become a friend or supporter for a fee; this will normally provide you with advance information and priority booking facilities.

Festival
Mailing list links
Friend /
Supporter
International Festival
Fringe
Book Festival
Film Festival
n/a
Jazz & Blues Festival
n/a
Art Festival
n/a
n/a
Military Tattoo
n/a

The August Feast

The August Feast is my collective term for Edinburgh's summer festivals. It consists of various items of reading material in pdf format. Apart from A History of the Edinburgh Festivals it includes a brief history of Auld Reekie for those who are interested in the city and summarises my favourite shows over the years.


Site last updated on April 23rd, 2014.


Latest Newsall 2013-2014 news | 2012-20132011-2012
Edinburgh Magic Festival's 2014 programme unveiled
posted April 22nd, 2014.
The programme for the 2014 Edinburgh Magic Festival was unveiled today. Further information can be found on its website. The press release
can be found here on the Pre-Festival Stuff page.
George Street marquees
posted April 18th, 2014.
The Edinburgh Evening News reports that Buckingham Palace-style marquees are to be set up in George Street from July in an attempt to establish a year-round cafe culture.

Book Festival's annual review of 2013 available
posted April 12th, 2014.

The Edinburgh International Book Festival's annual review of 2013 is now available to download from this page.
 
Registration opens for World Fringe Congress
posted April 9th, 2014.
The Courier reports that registration is now open for the second World Fringe Congress which will be hosted by the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from August 15th to the 17th, 2014. This year's Congress is part of the Culture 2014 programme which accompanies the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games.

Crombie to quit as chair of Creative Scotland
posted April 3rd, 2014.
The Scotsman reports that Sir Sandy Crombie will not seek a second 4 year spell as chairman of Creative Scotland in July. However, he has been asked to stay on until the end of the year while a replacement is found. Crombie quickly became a controversial figure with many in the arts community early in his tenure by encouraging organisations to become more business-aware.

St Andrew Square Garden to become Fringe venue
posted March 25th, 2014.
The Scotsman reports that St Andrew Square Garden will become a Fringe venue this year. It will host three performance areas, including the Famous Spiegeltent.

Richard Demarco receives the Edinburgh Award
posted March 25th, 2014.
Richard Demarco, arguably Edinburgh's foremost cultural figure over the last 60 years, has received The Edinburgh Award from the City Fathers. The Scotsman reports that talks are underway to find a permanent home for his archive, a vast collection of artworks, memorabilia and photographs.

Edinburgh Comedy Festival scrapped
posted March 21st, 2014.
The Edinburgh Comedy Festival, an attempted breakaway from the Fringe by the super venues or a re-branding of the comedy label - whichever story you believed, is being ditched, according to The Scotsman. It first came into existence in 2008 and has struggled to have any impact whatsoever, a bit of damp squib really.

Edinburgh International Festival's 2014 programme launched
posted March 18th, 2014.
The 2014 programme for the Edinburgh International Festival has been announced.
Information on the programme plus links to initial articles on the launch can be found here on the Pre-Festival Stuff page.
Second tranche of Fringe shows on sale
posted March 15th, 2014.
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe has announced that a second tranche of shows are now on sale. Details can be found here. Two further tranches will be made available on April 10th and May 13th before the full programme is launched on June 5th.

Edinburgh Art Festival's 2014 programme unveiled
posted March 13th, 2014. modified March 18th, 2014.
The Edinburgh Art Festival is the first out of the blocks with the announcement of its 2014 festival. Further details can be found on its website. Information on the programme plus links to initial articles on the launch can be found here on the Pre-Festival Stuff page.

Offer by unnamed philanthropist for St. Stephen's accepted
posted February 28th, 2014.
An unnamed philanthropist has put in the highest bid for St. Stephen's church. He / she will not be named until the deal is successfully completed. It is understood that the building will be set aside for community use and for the performing arts. Thom Dibdin's article provides further information, as does this one in The Scotsman.
 
Increased demand for Free Fringe venues
posted February 19th, 2014.
The Scotsman reports a 60% increase in applications to perform at the Free Fringe this summer. Promoter Peter Buckley Hill is concerned that he may have to turn some performers away due to a lack of available venues in the city centre.
 
Save St. Stephen's
posted February 7th, 2014.
The iconic, disused church of St. Stephen's is up for sale with a guide price of 500,000. The building has been used as a Fringe venue in recent years, most notably by Aurora Nova and the Northern Stage. The St. Stephen's Playfair Trust is keen for it to remain as a community facility, and it held a meeting last night, which attracted 300 or so people, to gauge public opinion.
The overwhelming majority at the meeting was in favour of the trust purchasing the property. 
Festival Fringe Society Review of 2013 available
posted February 7th, 2014.
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society's annual review of 2013 is now available to download from this page.
 
First tickets on sale from Edinburgh Fringe
posted February 6th, 2014.
Tickets are now on sale for an initial set of shows at Edinburgh Fringe 2014. Similar to last year, tickets for further tranches of shows will become available each month. The dates will be March 13th, April 10th and May 13th. The full programme and box office launch will take place on June 5th, 2014.
 
Paines Plough, 40th anniversary and its "pop-up" theatre
posted January 29th, 2014.
The Stage reports that the new writing drama company Paines Plough will have an extended touring schedule in 2014 to celebrate its 40th anniversary. This will be possible through the use of a portable 175-seater Roundabout auditorium at some under-represented locations. This "pop-up theatre" will be launched at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
 
James Plays at EIF 2014
posted January 21st, 2014.
The National Theatre of Scotland has announced that three plays written by Rona Munro on the Scottish kings James I, James II and James III will be performed at the 2014 
Edinburgh International Festival. The plays will subsequently be staged at the National Theatre in London during the early autumn period. 
Scottish Government latest Expo funding for festivals
posted January 21st, 2014.
The Scottish Government has been providing funding to the twelve Edinburgh festivals since 2008, with the emphasis on assisting Scottish works. It has announced that 2.25m will be made available in the 2014-2015 financial year. 200k will awarded to the James Plays by Rona Munro at the Edinburgh International Festival while 250k will go to Festivals Edinburgh. 

Edinburgh Art Festival 2014 - call for submissions
posted January 13th, 2014.
The Edinburgh Art Festival has today launched its annual call for submissions. Artists can find details here. The deadline for applications is Monday 10th February 2014 at noon.