JAMES MACMILLAN is literally getting mulli-media Coverage this Festival. Not only rs Scottish ()pera premiering his first full-scale opera. lm‘v l)e ('asrra. and the Mark Baldwin l)ance (‘ornpany dancing to his ('a/r/e.v.\‘imr.r ()f'ls-a/ie/ (ir‘nrr/ie. but a portrait of
the Ayrshire-born composer is also making its debut.
Commissioned by Scottish ()pera and now on show at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. the portrait is the creation of artist Calum (‘olvirr (‘ombining photography. painting and sculpture. the portrait is described by (‘olvin as ‘beyond categorisation — it's a meditation on form. arid quite unique.’ (‘olv-irt. who'd not previously met the composer. listened to CDs of h’laclvlillan's music to help build up the picture. ‘I have tried to get an idea of his working process — the diversity of sounds — and to make the portrait echo that.‘ Colvin himself also makes an appearance. ‘Just like Van liyck in The Arnaljini Marriage. l’ve crept into the painting.‘ See feature. page I4. (Susanna Beaumont)
Ines I)e ('as'rra ( Internatimru/ Festival) Festival 'I'lrearre. 225 5 756. 23—25 Aug, 7. l5/mr, £5—t’45. The Mark Bali/win Dame ('ampalrv (Fringe) Seattis/r Inter/rational (Willie 34) 220 5606. 22—24 Aug. 6pm. £6 ( £4).
Calrmr (.‘a/i'irr Tv painting is at the Scottish National Portrait (ia/lerv. 556 892/. Mair—Sat /()am—5/mr.' Sun I lam—5pm.
JUlIETTE BINOCIIE has had mixed luck with her English language roles - The Unbearable lightness 0! Being, Warhering Heights, Damage. Even in her native French, she hasn’t had much chance to display her comic talents. Now a lighter role has come her way, courtesy of Belgian lilmmaker Chantal Akennan. A Couch In New York, which closes this year’s Film Festival, casts her as Beatrice, a Parisian dancer who exchanges apartments with Manhattan psychiatrist William Hurt, then doles out advice to his patients while he faces the chaos at her home lite. A romantic comedy, the film captures the old- fashioned Hollywood style of lubitsch, Cukor and Capra, which Binoche reckons has a timeless appeal: ‘I can think of times when I’ve stayed in someone else’s apartment when they weren’t there. It’s true: you enter into a universe that’s ditierent trom yours. You enter the psychology of the person who lives there, their obsession, their manias.’ (Alan Morrison)
A Couch In New York (Film Festival) Odeon, 81314678855, 25 Aug, 7pm; 10.30pm, 210/215.
AMAMPOHDO are ilelson Mandela’s tavourite group, apparently. If you’ve ever seen and heard their insistently rhythmic blend of percussion and acrobatics, you’ll know why the South African group get their president’s vote. Now they’re back at the Festival tor the first time in nine years, celebrating their country’s new-tound multl-raclal democracy with bigger smiles than you can shake a stick (or maraca, or tambourine, or seed-tilled gourd) at. Amampondo (Fringe) Assembly Rooms ( Venue 3) 226 2428, 25-31 Aug, 11.30pm, 210/29 (£9/f8).
Flashes of brilliance
whole Festival is the Fireworks
Concert. sponsored this year by the Bank ()f Scotland. Apart from the lucky H.500 ticket-holders w ho have access to Princes Street Gardens. the surrounding streets are crammed with hundreds of thousands of spectators. who gather to gasp and cheer at the cascades of light and colour filling the sky. Some enterprising residents with a view over the Gardens hold house- parties (some even charging for admission); while others have private theories about where best to stand fora crowd-free view. There's also art official Family Viewing Area in lnverleith Park. a mile north of Princes Street.
If you‘re outside the Gardens. you'll find it hard to hear the concert. so the best bet is to take along a radio —- the concert is relayed live on Radio Forth (MW l548; FM 97.3) with a roadshow broadcast from the Family Viewing Area on both channels from 7pm.
As in previous years. the tnusic is performed by the lZ7-strong Scottish Chamber ()rchestra and Chorus. conducted this year by Gareth Jones.
The concert starts at ll).3()pm on Thursday 2‘). with the following programme:
I Zadok The Priest (Georg Friedrich Handel) Apart from the Messiah. this is probably Handel‘s best known choral work. A rnagisterial piece. it was written in the mid-l720s. at around the time the German-born composer became a British subject.
I Academic Festival Overture (Johannes Brahms) Unusually presented second on the bill. this rousing piece was written in l880. in response to an honorary degree bestowed on the German composer by Breslau University. and is made up mainly of lively student songs.
I Music For The Royal Fireworks (Georg Friedrich Handel) An obvious staple for the concert. this was first presented in I749 — at a peace celebration in Aix-La-Chapelle. whose ﬁreworks famously burned down the pavilion. Custom-made for the job. it's a splendid accompaniment to the visual delights of pyrotechnics. Ironically. the composer was completely blind within two years.
Tickets far Princes Street Gardens are now said out.
The List 23 Aug-5 Sept I996 7