Where and when: Merchant City, Glasgow, Thu 22–Sun 25 Jul. Unique selling point: Performance art on Glasgow’s glossiest streets. www.merchantcityfestival.com Yes, you’re right, it is usually on in September. The Merchant City’s annual celebration of food, fashion, art, comedy, music and anything else it can lay claim to has shunted up the festival schedule this year. Based on previous events, we can guess that this year will include at least some of the following: outdoor stages covered in great local bands at all hours of the day and night, well-kennt local comedians plying their trade, short films screening in intimate venues, street artists, dance performances, aerial displays, colourful street markets and innovative artistic exhibitions. Also look out for events housed in the new Trongate 103 venue. (Kirstin Innes)

Line-up: TBA.


Where and when: Glasgow’s West End, Mon 7–Sun 27 Jun. Unique selling point: The original community-run festival in the middle of the city. www.westendfestival.co.uk

‘This year’s West End Festival will be the biggest yet, to celebrate our 15th birthday,’ says Festival director Michael Dale. ‘We have organised almost three weeks of art, music, theatre, dance, exhibitions and talks.’ He’s not lying: the West End Festival programme is seriously fat this year, comprising almost 450 events hosted everywhere from local shops and hidden galleries to the regular, better known venues. The Stand will run a special series of comedy shows alongside their usual line-ups, Ashton Lane are once again playing host to the outdoor muso love-in Fête de la Musique, Oran Mor’s A Play, A Pie and A Pint theatre strand runs ‘cut-down classics’ all month, and look out for a very special classical event to mark the reopening of Cottiers’ Theatre. The highlight remains the Festival procession though, which will take place with a ‘Myths and Legends’ theme on Sun 13 Jun. Oh, then there’s the price. As Dale puts it: ‘Considering the difficult economic times we have been living in lately, I am also pleased that many of our events remain free so that as many people as possible can enjoy the festival.’ (Kirstin Innes)

Line-up: Maple Leaves, Woodenbox With A Fistful of Fivers, Bard in the Botanics, Janey Godley.


Where and when: Leith, Fri 11–Sun 20 Jun. Unique selling point This year’s festival includes a series of gigs in chip shops called Batter of the Bands. www.leithfestival.com Once one of the seediest, most deprived areas of Edinburgh, Leith has emerged as a chic stomping ground, complete with great pubs, live music and a host of hip community events. Building on its rep, this year’s Leith Festival boasts some 100 events in 50 venues. Leith Links welcomes back the Gala Day, Fun Fair and Parade festivities, while Cruz on the Shore hosts a rammy of rib-ticklers including Vladimir McTavish. Elsewhere, The Village, Out of the Blue and Iso Bar play host to electronic, disco and folk acts and more. Lastly, film lovers can check out the Leith Short Film Festival at Duncan Place Resource Centre. (Anna Millar)

Line-up: The Gillyflowers, Martin Metcalfe, Epic26, Chris Bradley, The Vibe and Machar Granit, Susan Morrison, Susie Lowe.


Where and when: North Berwick, East Lothian, Tue 10–Sun 15 Aug. Unique selling point: Eating fish and chips on the beach between shows. www.fringebythesea.co.uk While the Fringe festival swells Edinburgh to double its size, a calmer dose of culture can be found along the road at the other Fringe. Expect a mix of comedy, live music, kids theatre, dance workshops, author ‘In Conversation’ sessions and film screenings from The Filmhouse’s 25th Anniversary retrospective. And sand in your sandwiches and seagulls stealing your chips. Ah, summer! Just how we like it. They’ve got a big Spiegeltent too, for performances from Aly Bain & Phil Cunningham, Barbara Dickson and Mr Boom the kid’s entertainer with the whirly bit on his hat. (Claire Sawers)

Line-up: Eddi Reader, Julie Fowlis, Orkestra Del Sol, The Singing Kettle, Quentin Jardine, Fred Macaulay, Shappi Khorsandi, Scott Agnew.

Mull of Kintyre Green Man Festival

Festival 19-22 Aug,

20-22 Aug, Glanusk Park, Brecon

Campbeltown, Mull of Beacons, www.green

Kintyre, www.mokfest.com


Doves, Flaming Lips, Joanna Newsom and Fuck Buttons are set to play their various ranges of music in the beautiful Brecon Beacons

Edinburgh Mela 6-8 Aug, various venues, Edinburgh,



This multi-arts festival based in the heart of

The Edinburgh Fringe Festival 6-30 Aug, various venues, Edinburgh, www.edfringe.co.uk Let the chaos ensue as some of the best

Scotland’s capital grows in popularity every single

performers from the UK and rest of the world head

year. Expect shows, dance, music and wonderful food.

to Edinburgh to split the sides and expand the minds of the thousands who flock to the Fringe every year. Accompanying it will be the big gigs of the Edge festival (www.theed gefestival.com) at various venues across the city.

32 THE LIST 27 May–10 Jun 2010

Pittenweem Arts Festival

7-15 Aug, Pittenweem, Fife, www.pittenweem artsfestival.co.uk

Piping Live 9-15 Aug, various venues, Glasgow,



Among the visual artists The very best in piping

Edinburgh International

Festival 15 Aug-5 Sep, various venues,

Edinburgh, www.eif.co.uk

invited to attend this year’s festival are Cate Inglis, Ann Wegmuller, Kaneyuki Shimosaka and Keiko Mukaide.

entertainment. Highlights

include the Oran Mor Pipe Band, The National

Youth Pipe Band of Scotland and the

wonderfully monikered Red Hot Chilli Pipers.

Porgy & Bess, Bliss and The Blind Boys of

Paul McKenna Band and Scooter Muse will play

Alabama in The Gospel at Colonus are all vivid, colourful productions.

Those shows will feature at this year’s EIF, along with many other dance, music, theatre and visual

art acts.

alongside the

reappearing Red Hot Chilli Pipers at the

festival’s 22nd annual