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NEWS: Edinburgh International Festival Director Fergus Linehan has unveiled his first programme

The Edinburgh International Festival 2015 runs fromFriday 7 Augustto Monday 31 August and welcomes over 2,300 artists from 39 nations to perform in Scotland’s magnificent capital city.

New director Fergus Linehan, whose previous rôles have seen him head up the Sydney Festival, Dublin Theatre Festival and Vivid LIVE, revealed big international stars across the performing arts, and new areas of programming for the International Festival including more diverse genres of music and family focused shows.

This year’s Festivalopenswith a large, free, public outdoor event which sees aspectacular digitally animated artwork projected onto the front of the Usher Hall calledThe Harmonium Project.

Making theirfirst appearancesat the Edinburgh International Festival this year are artistsincluding Juliette Binoche, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Lang Lang, Sufjan Stevens, Sylvie Guillem, Franz Ferdinand &Sparks, Max Richter, Simon McBurney, Enda WalshandYuja Wang.

Celebrating its rôle in supporting andcommissioning great artistsfrom around the world to createnew work, the Festival this year hosts new productions fromRobert Lepage and Ex Machina, Complicite and Simon McBurney, Enda Walsh and Donnacha Dennehy, Ivo van Hove and Anne Carson, Scotland’s Citizens Theatre, Akram Khan and Russell Maliphant.

Looking todevelop future audiencesfor the Festival, the introduction of work conceived for young people into the main programme sees incredible experiences being offered inDragonbyVox Motus, National Theatre of ScotlandandTianjin Children’s Arts Theatre; and in a family concert the day before the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert in which theScottish Chamber Orchestraand Parisian technologistsChevalvert, specialists in creating visual spectacular concerts, join in presenting music from across the Festival.

The Festival continues to offer great value for young ticket buyers (18 or under, or 26 or under and in full time education) with adiscount of 50%available on all tickets from the opening of ticket sales.

A new series of late night music events,Hub Sessionssees the Festival debuts ofAnna Calvi, Oneohtrix Point Never, Bryce DessnerandRichard Reed Parry.Max RichterandDaniel Hopejoin theBBC Scottish Symphony Orchestrafor a concert at the Playhouse,Sufjan Stevenskicks off his European tour at the Festival andFranz Ferdinand &Sparkscome together for a rare live performance alongside the launch of their album.

Celebratinggreat Scottish work and artists, this year’s Festival offers people the world premiere ofAlasdair Gray’sLanarkin a production by theCitizens Theatrewritten and directed byDavid GreigandGraham Eatoughalongside opportunities for locals and international visitors to see two existing, works,DragonandUntitled Project’s and the National Theatre of Scotland’sPaul Bright’s Confessions of a Justified Sinnerdirected byStewart Laing.

Scotland’s three fine orchestras, theRoyal Scottish National Orchestra, theScottish Chamber Orchestraand theBBC Scottish Symphony Orchestraare not only playing central rôles in the Usher Hall series, but also teaming up with international artists at the Playhouse, Festival Theatre and The Hub.

One of the world’s largest fireworks concerts continues to bring the season to a close. OnMonday 31 AugusttheVirgin Money Fireworks Concertwill launch over 400,000 fireworks into the sky above Edinburgh Castle, choreographed to live music from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, an unmissable evening. Virgin Money has recently confirmed its support of the event for a further three years.

2015 also marks therealignmentof the International Festival with the dates of the other August festivals in Edinburgh, including the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, the Art Festival, the Edinburgh International Book Festival and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

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The Reviews Hub was set up in 2007. We aim to review all professional types of theatre, whether that be Commercial, Repertory or Fringe as well as Comedy, Music, Gigs etc.