The 2010s - Iconic Festivals Moments: Part Two
Throughout December we’re remembering the most iconic moments from the Edinburgh Festivals during the last decade:
A sculpture like no other
In 2013 an incredible balloon sculpture was created by New York artist Jason Hackenwerth for the Edinburgh Science Festival. The spiralling form was made from 10,000 balloons which took three staff members nearly six days to blow up, after which Hackenwerth and his assistant Leah Blair wove carefully into this three-dimensional structure.
Punchdrunk’s Small Wonders was shown in Scotland for the first time
The Edinburgh International Children’s Festival celebrated its 30th birthday in 2019 with special programme including Punchdrunk’s ground-breaking production Small Wonders. A unique immersive production shown for the first time in Scotland.
We discovered the true meaning of bravery with help from Merida
In 2012 Disney Pixar's Brave had its European Premiere at the Edinburgh International Film Festival. The stars of the film were in attendance greeting fans and media on the red carpet, including, voice cast Kelly MacDonald (Merida), Kevin McKidd (Lord and Young MacGuffin,) Robbie Coltrane (Lord Dingwall), Patrick Doyle (Martin), director Mark Andrews, producer Katherine Sarafain, composer Patrick Doyle and musician Julie Fowlis.
Van Morrison headlined EJBF
Legendary Northern Irish singer Van Morrison performed at the 2014 Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival. The Festival also achieved record box office ticket revenues with a 40% increase on 2013.
The first museum exhibition in the UK by Joan Mitchell
In 2010 the Edinburgh Art Festival presented the First museum exhibition in the UK devoted to influential abstract American painter Joan Mitchell. One of the most important and singular American painters of the post-war period, Mitchell’s influence continues to gain recognition today.
We watched time fly
In 2016 the Edinburgh International Festival opened with an event called ‘Deep Time.’ An epic, outdoor, public artwork, bringing together spectacular animation, lighting and music, and delving deep into 350 million years of Edinburgh’s history.
Six smashed it at the Fringe
Six, the stage show that turns King Henry VIII's wives into musical divas, started out in a 100-seat venue at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2017. The show was a huge success and went on to gain five Olivier Award nominations and to sold out shows in London and Chicago. Inspired by the likes of Beyoncé and Ariana Grande, it was the brainchild of former Cambridge University students Lucy Moss and Toby Marlow.
War Horse came to the Castle Esplanade
Joey, the life-size puppet horse from the National Theatre's production of War Horse, appeared at the 2013 Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo. Running on the outdoor Castle Esplanade accompanied by Adrian Sutton's symphonic score for War Horse performed by the Massed Military bands of 150 musicians.
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin wowed audiences
George RR Martin delighted a full house at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in 2015, discussing his A Song of Ice and Fire series with writer and literary critic Stuart Kelly. He joked that perhaps comic writer Stan Lee had been his biggest literary influence, sparking his interest in creating interesting characters through comics such as the Avengers and the Fantastic Four, and cited Boromir and Saruman from Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings as some of his favourite fictional characters because of the moral challenges they face.
Storytelling broke borders
The Scottish International Storytelling Festival looks to bring performers and storytellers from around the world to Edinburgh - and their 2015 theme 'Stories without Borders' saw the remarkable show 'Iran vs Israel' take audiences by storm. Iran vs Israel was a show about storytelling and how different narratives can touch different people in many ways.
Paolo Nutini sold out Edinburgh’s Hogmanay
Edinburgh's Hogmanay 2016 showcase concert headlined by Paolo Nutini sold out in a record three hours. 2013 also saw a new Night Afore Concert launched specially curated by headliner Paolo Nutini who chose Scotland’s Frightened Rabbit to join him on stage at the two headline events.