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ANNUAL REVIEW 2015/16


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A YEAR IN REVIEW In another outstanding year for the Trust we’ve seen an exceptionally strong programme presented on our stages and some really exciting education and outreach work delivered by our ground-breaking Learning and Participation team. For the fifth year in a row we have delivered a financial surplus, taking our reserves to £352,656 - reaching our target level a year ahead of schedule. We continue to have charge of two of Scotland’s most beautiful theatres: the Festival Theatre - which boasts the country’s largest stage - and the smaller but no less charming King’s Theatre. With two distinct auditoria and the now fully established and thriving Studio at 22 Potterrow, we are able to deliver a truly diverse and inclusive programme which we hope includes something for all ages and all areas of interest in the performing arts. At the Festival Theatre, the focus of the programme has been on opera, ballet, contemporary dance and larger scale drama. Highlights have included The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Opera North’s Carousel, Matthew Bourne’s The Car Man, The Trocks, Royal New Zealand Ballet with Giselle, King Charles III, Scottish Ballet’s Cinderella, Rambert and the return of the National Theatre of Scotland’s remarkable James Plays. At the King’s we have presented a programme of quality touring drama, children’s theatre and pantomime. A View from the Bridge, Jeeves and Wooster, The King’s Speech, Brave New World, Rebecca, and Handbagged delighted our theatre goers, and our spectacularly popular panto Snow White was seen by over 90,000 customers. As an independent theatre organisation and a registered charity in Scotland, we remain committed to reinvesting our surplus in our theatres and the communities they serve.

Our Learning & Participation programme has engaged over 25,000 people over the course of the year, and the recent creation of the post of Head of Creativity and Diversity underlines our commitment to introducing new audiences to our theatres and widening the accessibility of our activities. We extended our programme of relaxed performances to include all of our Christmas shows, we continue to increase the number of signed and audio described performances offered throughout the year, and in September 2015 we launched the Forget Me Not project to enable the Festival and King’s Theatres to become dementia friendly communities. As our theatres continue to age, we are constantly supporting their futures. We are developing our plans for the next phase of work on the King’s Theatre to preserve the ‘old lady of Leven Street’ for generations to come, and to make it a fully accessible venue for everyone. At the Festival Theatre our improved financial situation has allowed us to start a programme of repairs and upgrading to ensure that this beautiful theatre continues to meet the expectations of our customers. The successes of the year past have been made possible by the support of our Board and the hard work and dedication of the extraordinarily talented team of people who work in our theatres.

Professor Dame Joan Stringer Chair Duncan Hendry Chief Executive, Festival City Theatres Trust


CONTENTS 03 04-05

Facts & Figures

06-07 Comedy 08-09 Dance 10-11 Drama 12-13

Families including Panto

14-15 Festivals 16-17 Music 18-19 Screenings

Cover: Orlaith and Niamh Mckernan at the King’s photo by Phil Wilkinson

20-29

Learning & Participation

30-31

Supporters & Credits


DIGITAL ENGAGEMENT

2,694,317

of tickets were booked online (increase of 5%)

Visitors to our website (increase of 5%)

FACTS & FIGURES ENGAGEMENT

25,890

people engaged in 252 Learning & Participation events

Amateur 5%

Comedy 3%

Dance 16%

Drama 26%

Family 3%

Musicals 6%

Music 5%

Opera 7%

is how our customers rate their experience of both the Festival and King’s Theatres on tripadvisor

Panto 24%

4.5/5

Screenings 2%

Performance Income by Genre

Variety 3%

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45%


51%

increase in our Facebook likes, now numbering 21,897

10,800 Twitter followers (increase of 23%)

FINANCES

(Figures relating to unrestricted funds after transfers)

TOTAL FOOTFALL

423,735

05 Income

Income ÂŁ Operation of theatre 8,317,009 Grants 1,024,576 Trading operations 960,286 Friends, Patrons and Sponsorship 240,952 Other earned income 6,413 10,549,236

Outside of 7% Scotland

32,525

Expenditure

Other Scotland 24%

EH Postcode 69%

Where Our Audiences Come From

New attenders in 2015/16

Expenditure ÂŁ Operation of theatre 8,902,810 Trading operations 674,216 Marketing 670,013 Learning & Participation 76,784 Fundraising costs 45,311 10,369,134 Surplus 180,102


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COMEDY Variety was the name of the game in 2015/16. At the start of the year, Allan Stewart’s ever popular Big Big Variety Show provided a great chance for our audiences to see our panto stars reunited at the King’s as cult folk trio the MacRobert Brothers. Comedy plays packed the King’s, from the outrageous spoof and slapstick of Peter Pan Goes Wrong and Jeeves and Wooster, to the political satire of Handbagged and the dark comedy of the National Theatre

of Scotland’s Yer Granny starring some of Scotland’s best comedy actors including Gregor Fisher, Paul Riley, Jonathan Watson and Barbara Rafferty. At the Studio, 22 Potterrow, we’re delighted to be working with the Gilded Balloon on the Gilded Balloon Comedy Nights, and perhaps the biggest laughs of the year at the Festival Theatre were with the fabulous Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo.


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Clockwise: Yer Granny, MacRobert Brothers, Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo’s Swan Lake, Jeeves & Wooster


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DANCE Dedicated dance audiences were rewarded with a wealth of riches at the Festival Theatre in a programme that once again combined the classical and the contemporary to dazzling effect. Strictly circus but with a strong dance element, Cirque Éloize’s stunning choreography left us spellbound, while Matthew Bourne’s The Car Man was a thrilling tour-de-force and a masterclass in storytelling by the UK’s most popular dance theatre company. Envelopes continued to be pushed by a very welcome return from The Trocks, a revival of Richard Alston’s Burning and the Scottish premiere of Rambert’s Dark Arteries, a powerful new work inspired by the 30th anniversary of the end of the miners’ strike, and featuring Scottish Brass Band Champions, the Whitburn Band. Last seen in Scotland in 2004, Royal New Zealand Ballet was back with a Scottish exclusive at the Festival Theatre with the classic Giselle, a work that showed off the company’s strengths at all levels including a towering performance from the title lead, Lucy Green. And it was a fairytale come true for several Edinburgh locals who were given the opportunity to share the stage

with the professionals in both the Royal New Zealand Ballet production and balletLORENT’s Snow White. Our congratulations again to the fabulous Edinburgh ensemble of Giselle, a cast of seven ranging in age from 10 to 42, and the equally tremendous children of Preston Street Primary who danced with balletLORENT in Snow White. Scottish Ballet championed the new guard of international choreographers - Sophie Laplane (also a dancer with Scottish Ballet), Bryan Arias and Javier de Frutos - in their critically acclaimed Autumn Season, and returned for their second Christmas run at the Festival Theatre with the European premiere of Christopher Hampson’s enchanting Cinderella. In a year when we consolidated already strong relationships with companies including Scottish Ballet, Rambert, Alston and Dance Consortium, we were delighted to welcome Phoenix Dance Theatre to the Festival in March 2015.

Clockwise: Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Giselle, Rambert’s Dark Arteries photo by Johan Persson, Phoenix Dance Theatre’s UntilwithOutEnough photo by Stephen Wright


Over 6,000 people saw Matthew Bourne’s The Car Man, our biggest selling dance show of the year, excluding the Christmas run of Scottish Ballet’s Cinderella, which was seen by over 26,000 people.

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DRAMA A bumper year for drama, with a packed programme at the King’s and a strong focus on event theatre at the Festival with The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Lord of The Flies and King Charles III. The Touring Consortium Theatre Company continues to fly the flag for quality large scale touring drama that’s linked to the schools’ curriculum and enhanced by an integrated creative learning programme. Their stage adaptations of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World and Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge set a high standard at the King’s and one that was matched by Kneehigh Theatre’s Rebecca, Rapture Theatre’s All My Sons, the ever thrilling Woman in Black, and revivals of Birdsong and The King’s Speech, the latter including an impressive performance in a dramatic role from Jason Donovan. And if you love a good murder, we didn’t disappoint with

A Murder is Announced, The Perfect Murder and Rehearsal for Murder. Following the success of the National Theatre’s War Horse at the Festival Theatre in February 2014, we were delighted to have the opportunity to present a work of comparable scale and ambition, the National Theatre’s stage adaptation of Mark Haddon’s best-selling novel, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. A small story made vast in its dramatic power through an astounding synergy of performance, design, music and maths (!), Curious captured the hearts of our audiences and we are very pleased to say we have it back at the Festival Theatre in 2017.

‘It was an emotional roller-coaster, for me as a mum to two boys on the autistic spectrum… it was like watching my boys up on the stage. My husband said it was the best thing he’s ever seen and he went to buy the book the next day. It’s empowering… it was so accurate.’ Andrea McKinnon reviewing The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time on BBC Radio Scotland’s Culture Studio programme on 1 May 2015.

Clockwise: Jessie Wallace and Shane Richie in Edinburgh for the Scottish premiere of The Perfect Murder, February 2016 photo by Gordon Terris courtesy of The Herald / NewsQuest, King Charles III, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time


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62, 000 tickets sold for drama at the King’s in 2015/16 20, 443 people saw The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time at the Festival Theatre


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FAMILIES There were family favourites galore at our theatres, with some wonderfully riotous shows making a big noise for little people. Octonauts and the Deep Sea Volcano Adventure got the year’s family fun at the King’s off to a great start, and the success of this stage adaptation of a popular children’s TV animation was repeated later in the year with Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom. For fans of dressing up and shouting out loud, Sing-a-long-a Frozen at the Festival Theatre was just about as good as it gets, with Funbox’s Pirates and Princesses at the King’s running a close second. No dressing up but LOTS of screaming at Dinosaur Zoo at the Festival Theatre, and the noisy fun continued with STOMP and Cirque Berserk.

School at the Festival Theatre in June, and have now extended this annual event to become a showcase for all the city’s Special Schools. Our most important time for families is of course Christmas, and we celebrated our most successful Christmas ever with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at the King’s, Scottish Ballet’s Cinderella at the Festival Theatre and Frozen Charlotte’s delightful Paperbelle in the Studio. And for the first year ever, we hosted relaxed performances for all our Christmas shows, underlining our commitment to festive family entertainment for everyone.

We were proud to present the 10th consecutive show from the children of Pilrig Park Special

4,828 people saw STOMP, our biggest selling family show of the year, outside of the 2015/16 King’s panto run which was seen by 91, 732 people

Clockwise: Panto, Bethany Kingsley-Garner at the relaxed performance of Scottish Ballet’s Cinderella


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Record ON SALE days for King’s panto in 2015/16 To Groups (8 Feb) – £154,685 (up by 41%) To General Public (15 Feb) – £198,495 (up by 56%)


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FESTIVALS There’s not much goes uncelebrated with a festival of some sort in Edinburgh. As the offer continues to increase, our work with the established and the emerging Festivals continues to expand. In May we worked with Imaginate, the children’s theatre festival, with performances in the Studio. In June we hosted the gala screenings of the Edinburgh International Film Festival at the Festival Theatre, opening with Robert Carlyle’s directorial debut The Legend of Barney Thompson and closing with Scott Graham’s Iona. In July 2015, the Edinburgh International Magic Festival presented its spectacular opening gala, and later in the month we had the honour of hosting performances in the Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival, including shows from George Benson, Jools Holland, Curtis Stigers and Mud Morganfield. In August our theatres become home to the Edinburgh International Festival and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. In a stunning first programme from new EIF Director Fergus Linehan, the International Festival presented a stellar line-up,

including Komishe Oper Berlin’s The Magic Flute at the Festival Theatre along with French ballet legend Sylvie Guillem dancing in her last ever public performances, while Ivo van Howe’s production of Antigone starring Juliette Binoche wowed audiences at the King’s. We welcomed Fringe Festival producers Underbelly back to the Studio, with a packed programme including faux country music star Tina C and inspirational opera / cabaret star Le Gateau Chocolat. In September 2015, the Festival Theatre played hosted to the Ocean Film Festival for the first time. In October, we welcomed back Scotland’s creative ageing festival Luminate for events programmed in collaboration with our Forget Me Not dementia friendly programme, and in January 2016, we had the Banff Mountain Film Festival back for more thrills from the big screen.

Clockwise: The Magic Flute, George Benson, Juliette Binoche at the King’s Theatre, August 2015 photo by Alex Aitchison, Festival Photographer for 2015. The Festival Photographer project is supported by The Morton Charitable Trust


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MUSIC Encompassing rock, pop, opera, classical, folk and world music as well as big-budget West End musicals, our music programme includes something for all tastes and ages. During the course of the year, we had shows from Mike + the Mechanics, Voca People, Jack Jones, Yamato Drummers, and tributes to Simon & Garfunkel and Michael Jackson with Thriller LIVE. Scottish Opera’s programme at the Festival Theatre featured five productions that showed the company at the height of its creative^powers: a new production o of Janácek’s Jenufa co-produced with Danish National Opera, a revival of Peter Watson’s production

of Verdi’s Il trovatore, a revival of Bizet’s Carmen, The Devil Inside - a new opera from novelist Louise Welsh and composer Stuart MacRae and a stunning new interpretation of Handel’s Ariodante. For fans of musical theatre, the year included the fabulous feel-good musical Oklahoma starring Gary Wilmot and Belinda Lang, Sell A Door Theatre Company’s adaptation of 80s favourite Footloose and a musical of Welsh singing sensation Tom Jones’ rise to fame.

Clockwise: Gary Wilmot in Oklahoma, Xavier Sabata as Pilineso in Scottish Opera’s Ariodante, Yamato Drummers outside the front of the Festival Theatre photo by Phil Wilkinson


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SCREENINGS In June 2012, the Festival Theatre was delighted to be chosen as the venue for the opening gala screening of the Edinburgh International Film Festival and the UK Premiere of the Disney Pixar animation Brave. To meet the requirements of such an honour, we installed digital state-of-the art cinema projection and a full surround sound system throughout the auditorium, and at that point - with a 1,597 seating capacity - we officially became Scotland’s largest cinema. In addition to the opening and closing gala films in the International Film Festival, we roll out the red carpet for some very special film events, and present a programme of opera, ballet and theatre screenings which give our audiences the chance to see the very best in international arts at a fraction of the cost. In the past year, it has been our pleasure to work with NTLive - to bring screenings of

Coriolanus starring Tom Hiddleston and Hamlet starring Benedict Cumberbatch; Kenneth Branagh Theatre Company to present an encore screening of The Winter’s Tale starring Judi Dench and Rising Alternative to screen opera and ballet from Teatro alla Scala in Milan. Most excitingly, the Festival Theatre hosted the UK premiere of Justin Kurzel’s visceral film adaptation of Macbeth in September 2015. One of the biggest film events in Scotland since the 1992 premiere of Braveheart, the premiere was graced by the presence of star Michael Fassbender who stopped to talk to fans, sign autographs and pose for selfies.

Clockwise: Tom Hiddleston in Coriolanus, Benedict Cumberbatch in Hamlet, Michael Fassbender on the red carpet for Macbeth


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LEARNING & 20 PARTICIPATION We continue to place education and engagement at the heart of what we do. We have expanded our resources in the past year to include a new Learning & Participation Coordinator to develop our programme of activities at the theatres and to expand the communities we are reaching out to. We have also appointed a team member dedicated to delivering the new Forget Me Not dementia friendly communities programme. To oversee the

activities of Learning & Participation, we have created the post of Head of Creativity and Diversity to underline our commitment to developing inclusive spaces where everyone feels welcome to enjoy the experience of live performance. Our work is separated into 4 key areas: Overcoming Barriers to Access; Schools; Community

Engagement and Supporting Emerging Talent. Within these areas there are common themes that reach across all the strands of our work, with activities often complimenting each other, allowing for connections to be made and new audiences to be welcomed to our buildings.

Overcoming barriers to access Working above and beyond industry standards on access, we operate on the understanding that there is always more we can do.

7,086 tickets sold with an access discount in 2015/2016, a 9% increase on last year

In the past two years, we have doubled the number of audio described, BSL interpreted and captioned performances we programme. In January 2016 we hosted our first dedicated Open Access Day at the Festival Theatre to introduce new audiences to the range of services we provide, and the Festival and King’s Theatres took part in the national Disabled Access Open Day in March 2016. To extend the range of shows we currently have audio described, our describers trained in dance description are training our in-house team so we can make more of our dance programme accessible.

Open Access Day at the Festival Theatre, January 2016 photo by Greg Macvean


Relaxed Performances In December 2012, we were the first theatre in Scotland to programme a relaxed performance. The event, which welcomed over 300 children from ten special schools in Edinburgh - many of whom had never been to the theatre before - was exceptionally well received. The children were able to express themselves freely and move about if they wanted to; the house lights were left partially up, and the sound and production lights were taken down to create a relaxing environment for everyone. The response we had to that event has taken us on a journey that now sees us supporting relaxed performances for all our Christmas shows every year, with workshops organised at the schools before the school visits so the children are familiar with the stories and characters they’re going to see. Scottish Ballet hosted their first ever relaxed performance in December 2015 during the run of Cinderella at the Festival Theatre (this was also our first

‘public relaxed performance’ i.e. with a public audience, not an audience of invited guests from the city’s special schools); all the performances of early years show Paperbelle in The Studio in December 2015 were relaxed, and in January 2016 we hosted a relaxed performance of the King’s Theatre panto for the second year running. As a result, over 1,500 children with moderate to complex additional support needs are able to go to the theatre to enjoy a family Christmas show in a relaxed and supported environment.

The ongoing success of our relaxed performance programme for children and young people has shown us we can open up the relaxed format to older audiences. In October 2016 we will hosting the first dementia friendly performance in Scotland of a major touring musical, inviting people living with dementia and their friends and family to a special performance of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

‘We support children and young people with complex needs and their families and our main aim is to make life more fun and more fulfilling whilst providing both practical and emotional support. Around 100 of our members came to the relaxed performance of Cinderella and it was a truly magical experience. Most of our parents were nervous (and excited) about taking their children to the ballet and a theatre but on arriving it was clear that it was friendly, relaxed and welcoming. It was truly a remarkable opportunity for everyone.’ Celine Sinclair, Director of The Yard

Amy Hill and Jakub Pieta from Pilrig Park at the relaxed performance of the King’s Theatre panto on Thursday 14 January 2016 photo by Phil Wilkinson

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22 Outreach work with children We live for magical moments, and it doesn’t get much more magical than a child’s first experience of the theatre. As part of our community outreach, we help make it possible for children who would not or could not access our buildings to either come to our theatres, or if that’s not possible, we take the show to them. For many families, a trip to the theatre at Christmas time is an annual tradition. Every year we give 500 tickets to the City Council’s ‘Looked after Children’, to attend a performance of the King’s Theatre pantomime. In September 2015, we launched ‘Panto Presents’ with the Sick Kids Foundation so that we could take the magic of the panto to children who are in hospital in the lead up to and during the Christmas period. We developed resource boxes for each ward with fun activities and creative play ideas, performed a mini-panto at the hospital and arranged for the stars of the panto to visit the children on the wards. ‘Panto Presents’

will run initially over three years, and this Christmas we’ll be building a giant beanstalk at the Sick Kids hospital for the 2016/17 panto, Jack and the Beanstalk. Our outreach work with children runs throughout the year. This financial year marked the culmination of our 3-year START project, funded by Children and the Arts. The project, launched in 2013/14, gave a first time theatre going experience to young people with a view to developing an ongoing relationship with a cultural organisation. We worked with 350 P6 and P7 children each year from schools in areas of significant social and economic deprivation, bringing them to

‘Panto Presents’ performance at the Sick Kids Hospital photo by Greg Macvean

two shows over the year and delivering workshops before and after the visits in creative activities including costume design post panto and kite-making after their trip to Mary Poppins. In 2015/16 we supported the Street Arts outreach project, working with children and young people aged 5-15 in the community surrounding WHALE Arts in Westburn Grove. Our support of this innovative project - which helps reduce levels of anti-social behaviour by providing children with positive and inspiring activities on the streets around where they live - also included a visit to the King’s Theatre panto.


Forget Me Not Following a significant funding award from Scottish charity the Life Changes Trust, the Festival and King’s Theatres officially launched Forget Me Not in September 2015, a pioneering collaborative project designed to create dementia friendly communities at the heart of our cultural venues. Led by the project’s Coordinator Paul Hudson, Forget Me Not has set out a full and inclusive programme of events and activities to engage and support people living with dementia, their carers and their families. We have commissioned full audits of our venues to address ways we can make our public spaces more welcoming and easier to navigate, and based on the recommendations, we refurbished the Festival Theatre Café in January to create a more dementia friendly environment. The activities, which are currently based at the Festival Theatre and the Studio, have included theatre shows, tea dances, storytelling sessions, focus groups and a theatre club for carers, partnership working with Alzheimer Scotland and arts organisations across Scotland including the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Dance Base and Janice Parker Projects.

715 people have attended Forget Me Not events since September 2015

Helen Buchanan photographed at the ‘It’s a Funny Old Story’ stortytelling event at the Festival Theatre photo by Greg Macvean

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Schools, Colleges 24 & Universities 2015/16 was a busy schools year for us with a number of drama shows in the programme linked to the curriculum or with particular relevance to a youth audience. In addition to inviting school groups in to see drama, music and dance at our theatres, we provide bespoke backstage tours, access to talks and special events and a programme of workshops and activities for young people, and we go out to schools on a regular basis to meet and engage with the children in the classroom to fly the flag for live performance. We work with a team of Student Ambassadors to help spread the word about our shows at their colleges and universities, and we invest in sending our ambassadors where possible to venues elsewhere in the UK to see work before it comes to us. We support the ‘Try it for a Tenner’ student standby

ticket scheme to encourage more young people to come to our theatres, and we work with students in Higher English at the Royal High School to develop creative and critical writing skills, reviewing our shows. For teachers we offer opportunities for Career Long Professional Learning (CLPL) including practical, creative workshops such as puppet making, set design and stage make-up to develop skills to take back into the classroom. Our commitment to learning for all ages extends to our ‘Discover Festival and King’s Theatres’ courses which run every Autumn season.

Clockwise: Creative writing workshop at Forthview Primary photo by Aly Wight, stage make-up workshop photo by Greg Macvean, children at the relaxed performance of the King’s Panto photos by Phil Wilkinson


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249 School groups came to see shows at the theatres in 2015/16, a 29% increase on last year

‘The CLPL opportunities offered by Festival and King’s Theatre are exceptional. The CLPL is specially tailored to support the newer components of the National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher National Qualifications, which is fantastic. CLPL events are well organised, inclusive and provide excellent insight from industry professionals. As a City we are extremely fortunate to have such a positive partnership and highly value the CLPL you provide.’ Michael Cunningham, Drama Teacher at Holy Rood RC High School and Lead Teacher of Drama for the City of Edinburgh Council


26 Community Engagement Our theatres belong to the communities they serve, and we are always finding new ways to make people feel welcome and invited to take part in our creative activities. Our work with the city’s amateur companies also encourages the people of Edinburgh to treat our stages as their own. Within this financial year, in the lead up to Mary Poppins, we introduced a programme of drop-in weekly play sessions for mums and dads and little ones to engage in messy, musical fun at the Festival Theatre. For older audiences, we have had a great response to our dance workshops for the over 50s, offering amateur and professional

local dancers access to the UK’s leading classical and contemporary companies who come to perform at our theatres. Our in-house choir The Vintage Chorus continues to go from strength to strength, and our activities in our Forget Me Not dementia friendly programme reach out to engage and build confidence.

Clockwise: children at the Pop In play sessions, Ren McInnes at the Pop In play session photos by Phil Wilkinson, Agnes Ness in the Rambert Workshop for older adults, members of Southern Light’s The Wizard of Oz backstage at the King’s photos by Greg Macvean


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‘These workshops with the various companies who come to the Festival Theatre are absolutely invaluable. It gives myself and many other dancers over 50 a wonderful chance to get to know and dance with dancers from such a varied range of dance styles.’ Agnes Ness, Dance Makers’ courses, Dance Base, Edinburgh


‘I had such a brilliant week with all of the ensemble, cast and crew. Everyone was incredibly welcoming and generous with their time. As a young actor, it was an absolute privilege to share the stage with some of the actors who were so wonderful to watch and work with.’ Vanda De Luca, local actor, cast in the ensemble of A View from the Bridge

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Wherever possible we try and create opportunities for our audiences to be part of the action on our main stages and we’ve been extraordinarily lucky in the last year to be able to cast local ensembles for three outstanding productions: the Touring Consortium Theatre Company’s production

of Arthur Miller’s A View from the Bridge, Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Giselle and balletLORENT’s Snow White. It was also our great honour to audition 40 dogs and ultimately cast the wonderful Tara as ‘Candy’s dog’ in the Touring Consortium Theatre Company’s Of Mice and Men.

The star of A View from the Bridge, Michael Brandon, photographed with the Edinburgh local cast image courtesy of photographer Andrew O’Brien/Edinburgh Evening News’, Dog auditions for Of Mice and Men photo by Greg Macvean


Supporting Emerging Talent We are dedicated to sharing the skills and the talent of our permanent staff and the amazing individuals we work with in our partner organisations and visiting companies. One of our greatest achievements in recent years in supporting emerging talent was the DanceQuest project, and we marked the legacy of that achievement in January 2016, with the first DanceFest, an annual celebration of Youth Dance showcasing dancers from across Scotland.

‘DanceFest was a fabulous night for a wealth of young dancers from across Scotland. There was a wonderful atmosphere during rehearsals and the performance, where young people were sharing a learning experience together on one of Europe’s largest and best equipped stages, all the while supporting each other.’ Catherine Cassidy, Associate Director (Education), Scottish Ballet

In collaboration with the Traverse Theatre and funded by the City of Edinburgh Council, we have been proud to support Edinburgh Performing Arts Development (EPAD), a capacity building project for independent performing arts companies and artists based in Edinburgh. From July 2015 to April 2016, the project has seen 45 individual artists or producers at 8 sets of support surgeries and has facilitated 70 advisory meetings between these individuals and members of EPAD’s ‘Pool of Expertise’. We participate in the Federation of Scottish Theatre’s mentoring programme, Step Up, which is designed to support and develop professionals working within the performing arts sector. As part of our work with students training to come in the arts, we support the QMU mentoring scheme and had great feedback from our involvement in the past academic year.

‘The Employability Mentoring Scheme at Queen Margaret University partnered me up with Sam Goldblatt, the Marketing Campaigns Officer at Festival Theatre, who himself was a graduate of QMU. It couldn’t have been a better fit. Sam was patient and understanding and has been an invaluable resource in helping me search beyond the traditional job routes. In short, he has given me the hope and confidence in being able to find the perfect internship or, one day, the ‘dream job’. Matthew Ross, QMU final year Film student

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SUPPORTERS We are incredibly lucky to have a strong base of support from individuals, trusts and businesses along with our principal funders City of Edinburgh Council and Creative Scotland. Ticket sales alone are not enough to cover our core costs or enable us to carry out the great learning & participation work outlined in this review. w We’ve had a strong year of support, with fundraising income up over 40% on previous financial year. w We have been able to develop our work to overcome barriers to accessing the performing arts with contributions to our programme of relaxed performances, our Start programme, Youth Dance Platform and Awfey Huge Fantastic Variety Show from Radio Forth’s Cash for Kids, The Cruden Foundation, Children & the Arts, The Cordis Charitable Trust, The Bank of Scotland Foundation, the Walter Scott Foundation, and Active Edinburgh. w Our Friends programme continues to grow, up 12% on last year, providing over £120,000 of subscription income to the Trust. w Friends and Group Bookers kindly supported our Fundraising Appeals towards our Relaxed Panto and ‘Panto Presents’ project with the Sick Kids Hospital raising £3,500. w 525 people took part in development events last year including a visit on stage to see the Trocks up close, a showcase of young performers and a series of Friends coffee mornings. w Our 3 year initiative to make our theatres dementia friendly began in April 2015 thanks to the generous support of the Life Changes Trust. w Our ongoing work is underpinned by the vital support of our Patrons and Corporate Partners including RBS, Comcab, Walter Scott & Partners, Inverarity Morton and Kempen Capital Management.


CREDITS Board of Directors Professor Dame Joan K Stringer Cllr Elaine Aitken Philip Bernays Karen Cairney Cllr Karen Doran Kate Gemmell Cllr Norma Austin Hart Gordon Jack Cllr Richard Lewis Helen Mackie Cllr Melanie Main Alastair Peacock Colin Ross Chief Executive Duncan Hendry Director of Operations Brian Loudon Director of Finance and HR, Company Secretary Iain Ross Technical Manager James D Clark Principal Funder City of Edinburgh Council Programme Supported by Creative Scotland

Principal Patrons Sir Tom & Lady Farmer Mr Roger Miller Hedley G Wright 1 Anonymous Supporting Patrons Sir Ewan & Lady Brown Richard & Catherine Burns Sir Gerald & Lady Elliot Jo and Alison Elliot Kate & Gavin Gemmell Hamish & Alison Glen Malcolm & Avril Gourlay Fred & Ann Johnston Donald & Louise MacDonald Chris & Gill Masters Fiona & Ian Russell Alastair & Elizabeth Salvesen Barry & Helen Sealey Andrew Shepherd Jim & Isobel Stretton Sarah Whitely & Graham Whyte 8 Anonymous Patrons Geoffrey & Tish Alderson Veronica Bell The Cameron Family Dennis & Brenda Carmichael Dr Ann C Chandley Reverend and Mrs David Dalglish George Gwilt Shields & Carol Henderson Frank Hitchman John & Fiona Hutchinson James & Felicity Ivory

Alan M Johnston Sir Raymond and Lady Johnstone Lesley Knox Christine & Stewart Mackay Lynda McGrath Kirsteen Millar Sir Ronald and Lady Miller Walter & Norma Nimmo Mr and Mrs I F Osborne Christine Richard OBE & Fiona Richard Bruce & Eileen Ritson David Rodgers Derek & Ann Shepherd Mrs Eileen Waddell Margaretha Walker Sir John & Lady Ward 4 Anonymous Corporate Supporters Comcab Inverarity Morton Kempen Capital Management RBS Walter Scott & Partners Trusts & Foundations Life Changes Trust Radio Forth’s Cash for Kids Prince’s Foundation for Children & the Arts AEB Charitable Trust Cruden Foundation The Cordis Charitable Trust Active Edinburgh Bank of Scotland Foundation Walter Scott & Partners Foundation

A non-profit distributing company limited by guarantee and registered as a charity, SC018605

Chair Professor Dame Joan K Stringer

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Annual review 2015 16  

Festival and King's Theatre Annual Review 2015/16

Annual review 2015 16  

Festival and King's Theatre Annual Review 2015/16

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