The 69th Edinburgh International Festival of Scotland opens (Aug. 5 – 29, 2016)
With a new artistic director since last year in Fergus Linehan, this year’s Edinburgh International Festival features strong programs not only of theater, dance and opera but also contemporary music and jazz. This year, performances of three opera, eight theater, five dance and four classical music works, as well 15 contemporary music works are scheduled.
On the opera program are Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte directed by film (The Beautiful Person etc.) and theatre director Christophe Honoré and conducted by Jérémie Rhorer; Vincenzo Bellini’s Norma staring world renowned mezzosoprano Cecilia Bartolist; and the Mariinsky Opera under the artistic direction of Valery Gergiev presents Wagner’s Das Rheingold.
The theatre program features three Shakespeare plays in Richard III directed by Thomas Ostermeier , Measure for Measure directed by Declan Donnellan, and SHAKE, a rethink of Twelfth Night from British-born director Dan Jemmett. Also, American Repertory Theater present’s Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie starring Tony Award-winning actress Cherry Jones. From the Scottish capital of Glasgow, a festival hosting city, the Vanishing Point joins the program with two shorter works, The Destroyed Room and Interiors.
On the dance program, the Royal Ballet company’s top ballerina, Natalia Osipova, takes on pieces by three young choreographers, Russell Maliphant, Arthur Pita and Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui. Akram Khan presents a remake of his 2011 autobiographical solo show DESH, this time oriented for children and titled Chotto Desh. Canadian contemporary dance company The Holy Body Tattoo dances a piece titled monumental to the music of the post-rock band Godspeed You! Black Emperor.
The Edinburgh International Festival is a performing arts festival held over a period of three weeks in August each year in the Scottish capital of Edinburgh. The Festival was founded in 1947 with the aim of providing “a platform for the flowering of the human spirit.” Its programs cover the fields of classical music, theatre, opera, dance and visual art. From 2006 to 2014, the Festival Director and Chief Executive is Australian Jonathan Mills, who also has experience at the Melbourne Festival.
For its 65th holding in 2011, the festival adopted and Asia focus with roughly 140 events traditional and contemporary Asian performing arts performed at 11 venues around the city of Edinburgh. That year the music festival featured performances by Indonesia’s Royal Yogyakrata Gamelan troupe, the sitar musician Ravi Shankar, sarod musician Amjad Ali Khan and other traditional Asian music, as well as a lineup of classical music performances by Asian musicians, including Chinese guitarist Xeufei Yang, Singapore’s Tang Quartet, the Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra directed by Chung Myung-Whun and the rising young Chinese pianist Lee Yundi among others. Also, Canada’s Montreal Symphony Orchestra and Britain’s Arditti Quartet will perform contemporary music by the Japanese composers Toru Takemitsu and Toshio Hosokawa. On the theater program, there was a world premiere of an international joint production with Japanese and American actors performing a play based of novelist Haruki Murakami’s The Wind-up Bird Chronicles directed by video artist Stephen Earnhart and using video technology from Japan and the U.S. From Japan, photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto was invited to give an exhibition of his work.
From 2015, the festival’s new director is Fergus Linehan, who has served as director of the Dublin Dance Festival and the Sydney Festival as director.
- Edinburgh International Festival