Weekend - Kat Gollock

Edinburgh International Children's Festival 2024

Edinburgh International Children's Festival 2024

24 May 2025 - 1 Jun 2025 Visit festival website

The Edinburgh International Children's Festival is a 9-day festival offering innovative family-friendly theatre and dance for young audiences. The Festival celebrates the best of children’s theatre and dance from around the world, showcasing high quality, distinctive Scottish and international performances to an audience of children, their teachers, and their families each year. The Festival has also established itself as one of the best places for programmers from all over the world to see work of the very highest standard. It is a place where artists meet, see and discuss work, and take part in professional development activities.

Every year the programme delivers performances with big ideas, epic stories and flamboyant physicality which will help young audiences make sense of our sometimes-conflicted world. The often visually striking productions take place in theatres and community centres across the city, and the Festival opens with a day of free-pop-up performances in the National Museum of Scotland. The Festival has developed a reputation for pushing the boundaries of what is expected of children’s theatre and dance, exploring important themes like mental health, war, identity and gender, all in joyful, visual and accessible ways.

What makes it special?

  • The Children’s Festival searches all over the world for the most exciting and interesting shows to share with young audiences – extraordinary live performances and stories that encourage desires, dreams and ambition. As well as delighting children and families, the Festival has become a place for programmers to discover new artists and innovative shows.
  • The Festival creates special moments of joy for families and friends. It’s a chance for children and adults to hear stories from all over the world, discuss new ideas, be entertained and challenged, and more importantly, a chance to share a live experience together.
  • The 9-day festival offers a jam-packed programme of circus, dance, storytelling and theatre, and opens with a family day featuring free pop-up performances by Scottish-based artists, held in the stunning National Museum of Scotland.
Childrens - Joyce McMillan2

After 20 years as a professional theatre critic in Scotland, I can say honestly that, in my opinion, the country's finest theatre festival is the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival

Joyce McMillan, theatre critic of The Scotsman

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