Edinburgh is gearing up for August Festival season and here in Fife there's going to be plenty happening as well. So why not grab a coffee, sit down and take note.
First of all, a late reminder that tonight, Tuesday 26th July, Liz Lochhead is at Toppings in St Andrews for their School of Night event. Do go along if you can.
Tomorrow night the wonderful Jamaican poet and writer, Lorna Goodison, will be at the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh. The event starts at 6.30pm.
Back in Fife, the summer programme, Byre in the Botanics, has been a great success this year in the Botanic Gardens in St Andrews, enjoying many sell-out events. On Saturday 30th July, there's a Shakespearean flavour to the evening with Opera Up Close - Music Oft Hath Such Charm. The Olivier award-winning OperaUpClose mark the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death with a light-hearted performance of songs, operatic arias and ensembles inspired by his plays and poetry, performed in the company’s engaging, intimate and theatrical style.
Spectacular show-stoppers from Verdi’s Macbeth and the quick-witted wordplay of Much Ado About Nothing and Falstaff rub shoulders with well-loved songs like Schubert’s Who is Sylvia? and lesser known operas inspired by the Bard.
Details of the whole programme at http://www.standrewsbyreinthebotanics.com.
Starting the following weekend, Pittenweem Art Festival runs from 6th to 14th Festival. A celebration of the visual arts taking place in galleries, homes, studios and other venues throughout Pittenweem, it is always a great day out and as well as the exhibitions and installations, they have a programme of
events throughout the festival.
In Edinburgh the Edinburgh International Book Festival runs from 13th August and we'll be sending details soon of highlights from their poetry and spoken word programme, so watch this space.
There's plenty of poetry and spoken word off offer in Edinburgh next month, at the Fringe as well as at the Book Festival. You can browse poetry and spoken word events at the online programme for the Fringe and there's also the Free Fringe (though be prepared for them to ask you to make a donation).
The BBC Edinburgh Slam heats are nightly at 8.30pm from Monday 8th to Thursday 11th inclusive with the final at 9.00pm on Sunday 14th. This year the BBC have moved to the grounds of George Heriot's School, Lauriston Place, Edinburgh, EH3 9EQ. The heats are free and unticketed. The final is free but ticketed. It always sells out so it's a good idea to book your ticket soon.
Then on Friday, 26 August there will be an evening event at Lindores Abbey in Newburgh to celebrate the opening of the new Lindores Abbey Distillery. Poets Douglas Dunn and Brian Johnstone will take part in this and we'll be giving more information on this soon. Meantime, note the date for your diary.
Finally, St Andrews Voices have just announced their programme for their 2016 festival which runs from 20-23 October - see: http://standrewsvoices.com. Drawing together the very best musicians from the UK and beyond, St Andrews Voices presents inspirational concerts celebrating the voice in all its many
guises: opera, cabaret, Lieder, folk, choral, early music, contemporary music and more.