Category Archives: Arts and Culture

The Edinburgh – Glasgow co-op on Homeless World Cup

Photo Above: Book Signing at Event © Philip Wegmann

By Ian McNally and Philip Wegmann

An Edinburgh church was transformed into a football sanctuary yesterday, as it played host to the launch of a new book about the Homeless World Cup.

“Home Game” by Mel Young and Peter Barr was unveiled in Augustine United Church on George IV Bridge and featured a Q&A with the authors followed by a book sale and signing session.

Continue reading The Edinburgh – Glasgow co-op on Homeless World Cup

Sturgeon shares the book love in Book Week Scotland’s first virtual festival

Photo Above: Nicola Sturgeon © Kenneth Halley on Wikipedia

Nicola Sturgeon joined in with Book Week Scotland celebrations last night with a live Q&A on Twitter.

Users submitted their book-related questions to the First Minister using the hashtag #FMBookChat, who then spent an hour tweeting about her favourite books.

Continue reading Sturgeon shares the book love in Book Week Scotland’s first virtual festival

Legally Blonde The Musical has beauty and brains

By Lindsay Thomson

Photo Above: Legally Blonde Musical Act © Festival and King’s Theatres Edinburgh

Legally Blonde the Musical kicked off its Edinburgh run on Monday night at the Festival Theatre.

The stage musical adaptation of the 2001 Reese Witherspoon comedy follows the fortunes of the idealistic Elle Woods (Lucie Jones) as she seeks to earn a law degree and the heart of her beloved Warner Huntington III (Liam Doyle). Continue reading Legally Blonde The Musical has beauty and brains

Feminist film-poem puts street harassment under the lens

Photo Above: Hopscotch Poster  © Nadine Aisha

Edinburgh-based poet and activist Nadine Aisha published a film adaptation of her poem ‘Hopscotch’.

The award-winning filmmaker Roxana Vilk directed the film, which talks about street harassment against women-of-colour, for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence.

Continue reading Feminist film-poem puts street harassment under the lens

Saltire Awards to celebrate Scottish writing at St Andrew’s Day ceremony

Photo Above: Saltire Society Logo © Saltire Society on Wikipedia

The Saltire Society will announce the winners for its Literary Awards at a special ceremony tomorrow, coinciding with St Andrew’s Day.

39 books, writers, and publishers have been shortlisted by the literary society, which aims to celebrate and promote Scottish writing.

Continue reading Saltire Awards to celebrate Scottish writing at St Andrew’s Day ceremony

Beaverhall Open Day: A boost for the local art scene

Photo Above: Work Station © Rachel Mackie

The old converted chocolate factory in the Broughton area seems an unlikely place for the vibrant heart of many creative, independent businesses, but never the less, there they are. With another open weekend, they open the doors to the talent that lies within.

Continue reading Beaverhall Open Day: A boost for the local art scene

Comedians take a Stand in refugee charity gig

Photo Above: Sign Supporting Refugees © Haeferl on Wikipedia

By Ian McNally

A collection of comedians took to the stage in Edinburgh last night, with over £700 in proceeds going to two leading refugee charities.

Benefit in Aid of Refugee Community Kitchen and CRIBS International was held at The Stand Comedy Club on York Place.

Continue reading Comedians take a Stand in refugee charity gig

2 millionth visitor breaks National Museum of Scotland record

Photo Above: Child With Dinosaur Fossil © NMS 

By Becca Inglis

The National Museum of Scotland announced a record number of annual visitors yesterday.

So far, two million people have crossed the museum’s threshold this year, the first time that this milestone has been reached in its 150 year history. Continue reading 2 millionth visitor breaks National Museum of Scotland record

Creative Edinburgh winners to be announced this Friday

Creative Edinburgh will announce the winners for its annual awards at its 6th anniversary party this Friday.

The network of 3,500 creative and tech businesses is honouring exceptional professionals that have contributed positively to the city.

Continue reading Creative Edinburgh winners to be announced this Friday

Pixar co-founder to take six-month sabbatical following unwanted hug complaints from staff

Photo Above: Pixar © Pava on Wikipedia

John Lasseter, head of animation at Pixar and Disney, will be taking a sabbatical following a wealth of allegations building around him.

The allegations, inclusive of Mr Lasseter giving out unwanted hugs and invading personal space, have led to his deliverance of a statement apologising for his actions.

Continue reading Pixar co-founder to take six-month sabbatical following unwanted hug complaints from staff

“Can Journalism Survive the Death of Newspapers?” – Roy Greenslade lecture at the University of Edinburgh

Photo Above: Roy Greenslade © Sinn Féin on Flickr

By Charlotte Hulme and Aisling Press

Roy Greenslade, former Editor of The Mirror, delivered a lecture at the University of Edinburgh last night, during which he predicted the end of print media.

Continue reading “Can Journalism Survive the Death of Newspapers?” – Roy Greenslade lecture at the University of Edinburgh

Theatre company launches crowdfunder to feed and clothe Leith’s homeless

Photo Above: Edinburgh Homeless © Aiala Garcia on Flickr

Creative Electric launched a crowdfunder to support a community arts cafe in Leith yesterday.

The Edinburgh-based theatre company hope to raise £1,000 for the re:place community arts cafes project, a pay-it-forward scheme to help homeless and vulnerable people in the area.

Continue reading Theatre company launches crowdfunder to feed and clothe Leith’s homeless

How German is Edinburgh’s Christmas Market?

Photo Above: Edinburgh Christmas Market © Silja Froehlich

By Silja Froelich

Edinburgh these days feels like strolling through Santa Claus’ winter wonderland. Blinking trees, gift ribbon decorated houses and sparkling light chains illuminate the town. Once again, Edinburgh’s Christmas market opens its doors, adding extra glow to Scotland’s capital.

Continue reading How German is Edinburgh’s Christmas Market?

Stranger Hings: Chris McQueer announces sequel to debut book

Last night Chris McQueer announced that he will be releasing a sequel to his literary sensation Hings.

Hings: The B-Sides will feature eight short stories in a 40-page A5 zine.

404 Ink will release the booklet in mid-December as part of their new zine series.

The first instalment of Hings was published in July this year and was an immediate hit in the Scottish literary community.

Comparisons were made between McQueer, Irvine Welsh and Limmy for his surreal humour and focus on Glasgow’s working class community.

His publishers discovered McQueer when he submitted a short story to the first issue of their magazine in November last year.

They invited him to read at the launch party for the Error issue, where he read an extract from ‘The Dug’.

“We loved Chris from the moment his short story ‘The Universe Factory’ landed in our inbox,” said 404 Ink when they announced Hings in March. “After bringing down the house with his readings we knew 404 had to publish him,” his publishers commented.

Prior to submitting his work, McQueer was already publishing his work on the long-form writing platform, Medium.

He had generated thousands of followers on Twitter, a community that 404 Ink were able to tap into when promoting the book.

One of their tactics included encouraging Twitter users to Photoshop images of Hings into pop culture pictures.

404 Ink are known for their innovative approach to promoting books online, and were nominated for a Creative Edinburgh Award on Monday.

Grown Together Exhibition: Consequences of disconnect between humans and nature

Photo Credit: Rachel Mackie

Deep within a third floor gallery on the outskirts of the city centre, hides the Grown Together Exhibition.

The Grown Together exhibition experiments with nature and beauty in unique and powerful ways, and includes the collaborative work of eighteen artists.

The sparse surroundings add extra atmosphere to stunning and original pieces that evoke real emotion from its audience.

With a vibrant mix of audio, visual and poetry, this display shows our various connections to nature, and the beauty of the world around us.

Artist Anne Gilchrist said: “I have grown steadily to understand the terrible consequences of human disconnect from nature and hope my work may speak for the non-human.”

And this is the reality of the pieces that are on display, a real examination of our impact on our surroundings.

The diversity of the artists shows a full and colourful approach that never repeats or bores, and each piece of work offers an insightful and mesmerising view into the creator’s mind-set.

Participating artist Isabell Buenz has always been inspired by the natural world, using paper and old books within her work quite regularly.

“I work with seconds, discarded paper and books. The books I use are second hand from charity shops, donations or discarded library books. When I create my book sculptures I use books and book pages that are relevant to the subject of the event,” Buenz said.

Photo Credit: Rachel Mackie

She goes on to describe her work with the gallery as:

“Probably one of the best exhibitions I have been part of. It deserves to be shown in a nationally acclaimed gallery.”

This is a comment reiterated by many, that this exhibition deserves more exposure due to the high level of talent that is on display.

The work was put together by artist and curator Tansy Lee Moir. It is situated in Gallery One, St Margaret’s House, and is free entry.

Trainspotting at the Kings

Photo Credit: Kings Theatre

According to a press release by the Kings Theatre, “It’s just a scabby wee book, what the fuck is all the fuss about?” is the question Irvine Welsh asked himself before seeing the first rehearsals of the stage adaptation of  Trainspotting back in 1994.

Director Gareth Nicholls brings the story back to the Kings Theatre 23 years after the wee book about the underbelly of Leith’s drug scene gained global notoriety through film and multiple stage productions.

Nicholls’ production however draws from the original book, play and film, combing them to make a new piece of theatre.

Even before the show started the crowd was drawn into Thatcher’s Britain with a well thought out pre-curtain soundtrack, building anticipation by rekindling fond memories of the film.

After the recent success of T2, revisiting the original story seemed to be a logical step.

The first scene dropped straight into the middle of the story and automatically gave any new viewers an insight into the characters and where the story was going to take us. Renton (Lorn Macdonald) and Spud (Gavin Jon Wright) sat in a spotlight discussing how not to get the job they were both applying for: “a wee dap ay speed just the ticket.”

The first thing that was very apparent was how accurate both of the young actors’ Edinburgh accents were, something that McGregor’s on screen Renton lacked. It was a set up for what was going to be a very enjoyable performance.

With a cast of just five and multiple characters to include, it was interesting to see how the actors were going to cope portraying such well known fictional personalities.

This was achieved seamlessly. The costume changes were so quick that sometimes it was hard to notice that they had been offstage at all. This was matched by the ability of the actors to move between their personas.

Photo Credit: Kings Theatre

Although it was hard to fault a single performance, a special mention has to be given to Jon Wright’s portrayal of Spud. From comic timing allowing time for the laughter to settle between his jokes to his facial expressions and his movement, he had the character down to a tee.

The inclusion of long monologues for all of the characters helped to give the story real depth. The script also expanded the story to include a lot of important material which the film did not and the first hour flew by.

The dark humour of the book was masterfully delivered, giving light to the hopelessness of the time and occasionally making you question if you should be laughing at all.

Given the growing gap between the social classes and the rise in drug-related deaths in Scotland, the story is as relevant today as it was in 1994.

Whether you are a fan of the original or someone who is new to Trainspotting, this is a five star performance which should not be missed.