New International Festival videos delve into artists' work

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Edinburgh International Festival's highly popular Portraits video series is back for 2017, with six world-class artists offering insights into their creative processes. 

Featured in this year's videos are playwright Alan Ayckbourn, sitar player Anoushka Shankar, violinist Joshua Bell, playwright Zinnie Harris, artist and musician Martin Creed, and pianist Mitsuko Uchida

It's the only place where we can go as people and remind ourselves of what it is to be human

With the premiere of his brand new play, The Divide, celebrated storyteller Alan Ayckbourn takes International Festival audiences to a dark and dystopian future. Here he tells us about the live theatre experience and the importance it holds for him.

There's also a chance to see video portraits of: 

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Anoushka Shankar, discussing the power of the on-stage experience:

I think that's what music can do - it can help us connect to each other

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Joshua Bell on first discovering music and why it means so much to him:

Music has a way of expressing some of the great essences of the human spirit, of the world, the universe, in ways that are so hard to put into words

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Zinnie Harris on the formation of stories and their importance for humanity: 

I think part of being a human is to try and explore different ways of telling stories

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Martin Creed reflecting on his need to remain true to himself as an artist:

I find it really difficult to use the word art, because I don't really know what it is

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Mitsuko Uchida discussing the unpredictability of live performance:

The music should be that; you should just have the pure pleasure and joy and be open to it

Edinburgh International Festival takes place from Friday 4 to Monday 28 August and tickets are on sale now. For more festival information plus programme and ticketing links, please visit our festival page.

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