Arts News!

Phantom of the Opera UK Tour Cancels:

Phantom of the Opera UK Tour Cancels:

As theatres up and down the country and producers continue to count the cost of COVID lockdown and with no financial support or information from the Governments of the UK or the devolved nations as to how theatres can safely be reopened. The theatrical casualties are mounting.

The biggest so far is the announcement from Sir Cameron MacIntosh and Really Useful Theatre company that confirms the 2020 UK Tour of Phantom of the Opera which open at the Curve Leicester will sadly no longer continue.

A spokesman confirmed that It is with great sadness that due to the current state of complete shutdown of the British theatre by the Government because of Covid-19, Cameron Mackintosh and The Really Useful Group must announce that their new UK and Ireland Tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “The Phantom of the Opera”, which had only played its opening date prior to a 14 month tour, will not re-open.

The great uncertainty around the duration of social distancing requirements and the perilous financial situation in which many regional theatres find themselves have conspired to make re-routing an entire major tour like Phantom impossible for some time as so many existing tours are needing to reschedule.

The production opened at Curve, Leicester at the beginning of March. Subsequent runs in Manchester and Dublin have already been cancelled. Following these dates, the tour was due to play Birmingham, Edinburgh, Sunderland, Cardiff, Plymouth, Southampton and Bradford.

Whilst it is heart breaking for us as producers as well as for our wonderful cast, orchestra and crew who had all worked so hard to create this truly spectacular but tragically short-lived reinvented staging of the original production, we are determined that the disappearance of the “Phantom” from the British regional stage will not be forever and that when Theatre is back thrilling audiences again the “Music of the Night” will soar once more from the orchestra pit.

Sadly, this will just be the start of many productions effected, lets hope we continue to control this virus, and find the pathway to opening our Theatres, for now the Ghost lights continue to burn brightly.

Ticket Holders for the Edinburgh Festival Theatre run of the show will be contacted by the Box office directly.

Arts News!

Dance Horizons, Innovations Change of Platform:

Dance Horizons, Innovations Platform

As the arts industry continues to feel the ongoing effects of the current restrictions that sees Theatres and performance venues until the end of June at the earliest. Companies across the country are busy rescheduling dates were possible and we urge you to keep an eye on individual websites for full details on the ever-changing situation.

Edinburgh based dance company Dance Horizons had planned to stage their annual Innovations Platform in Edinburgh’s The Studio on 1sr May and was rescheduled to 18thJuly. However, given that theatres may well not be open even July the company have announced a new date set in the autumn.

Innovations was initiated with the ambition of championing creative innovation within the field of contemporary dance. Opening doors for dance artists and companies at all stages in their career as a catalyst for presenting their work to new audiences.

Innovations have held platforms annually since 2014 presenting eclectic and diverse programmes by artists from the UK and abroad. 2018 saw the platform open its first Edinburgh Fringe Festival Edition, giving artists the opportunity to present their work in the heart of the biggest cultural and arts festival on the planet.

The platform is currently programmed on a seasonal basis at Capital Theatres in Edinburgh in combination with a series of micro-platforms and events as part of other UK festivals. Innovations is produced by Dance Horizons, Edinburgh and benefits from an industry board made up of currently working dance makers, choreographers and organisations to continue the platforms work in supporting the wider dance ecology.

To date, the platform has presented over 7 editions of works by more than 14 dance makers and companies at various stages of their professional careers.

Speaking to company CEO Oliver Anwyl he said “We extend our sincere gratitude to the dedicated team at Capital Theatres for their ongoing support and guidance to artists, companies and producers as the effects of the pandemic rip through our already fragile industry. It has been a turbulent time for small organisations and independent artists but the resilience of our industry will persevere and we will be back, stronger than ever”

The spring Dance platform will now be staged on Saturday 31st October 2020, followed closely by the winter edition on 28th November both of these performances return to The Studio Theatre and will feature the same programme as previously announced including Company Concentric, London. Peter Twyman Dance Company from Edinburgh. Stefano Neri from Italy and Lost Movement Company, from the Netherlands

Let’s hope these are the dates to see the best of Dance from across Europe.

For tickets go to:

Arts News!

Edinburgh Festivals Cancelled for 2020!

Edinburgh Festivals Cancelled for 2020! 

As the world continues the battle against COVID 19 and we here in Scotland continue in our Lockdown lives and making social distancing a reality. The theatre world remains closed down and annual summer events continue to fall one by one into cancellation or rescheduling for later in the year.

For the last few weeks, the combined Edinburgh Festival organizations have painstakingly been meeting with officials, stake holders, performers and the city itself to find the right answer to the question, do we continue with this year’s planned festival events? The answer is sadly No.

For the first time in 70 years The Edinburgh International Festival, The Edinburgh Art Festival, The Edinburgh Book Festival, The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo and The Edinburgh Fringe Festival are cancelled for 2020.

It’s a heartbreaking time for the industry and for the city and the repercussions of this decision will be felt well beyond August. However, this is the right decision and we at ScotsGay arts commend those who had the difficult job of making this decision.

Yes August may be four months away but with those most vulnerable being shielded for 12 weeks our city and country will still be coming back to some sense of normality, there is simply no way the infrastructure and planning which takes months for every venue to go through could be achieved in the time frame that’s left.

In the bigger picture it will be a time for reflection and a chance to breath and welcoming the world to Edinburgh would at best be insensitive and at worst utter madness. A fallow year may be just what the Combined Festivals need to refocus and rediscover the true spirt that saw the birth of the festivals in the first place.

Speaking of the true spirit of the festivals, who knows where we will be in four months, if restrictions are eased and theatres do reopen, perhaps it will be a chance for local companies to take centre stage and entertain the great city that Edinburgh is, and the world can be reassured, Edinburgh and Scotland will be ready to welcome the world back in 2021.

For now, people matter, and the message remains clear, Stay Home, Protect the NHS and Save Lives.

Official Statements can be found at the following links:

Arts News!, Brett Herriot Review, Kieran A Wilson Review, Mary Woodward Review

2019! Thank you!

Thank you from all of us for an Amazing 2019!

With Hogmanay and the New Year Celebrations just around the corner, We at Scotsgay Arts have just published our 100th and final review for 2019. 2019 has been a epic year across the cultural landscape of Scotland and its as much of an honour and privilege now as it has been since we started to be able to sample the very best of the countries output.

To all 100 hundred productions we reviewed, the many more we previewed, the 100’s of reviews on our sister site  we thank you for sharing your work with us, for being brave and sharing your creative endeavours with the world and for continuing to push the boundaries of the last truly uncensored space known as the theatre.

Personally I am indebted to the hard of work of my fellow writer Mary Woodward and thankful for the guidance and support of Taylor Crockett especially during the biggest arts festival known as The Edinburgh International Fringe Festival. My profound thanks to Kieran A Wilson for his guest writing contributions.

We will be back in 2020 with even more of the very best, News, views, Previews and Reviews from across Scotland. To you and yours thank you for being with us in 2019 we wish you a peaceful and Prosperous New Year.

Brett Herriot


Arts News!

Dance Horizon’s 5th Birthday and Launch Evening

Dance Horizon’s 5th Birthday and Launch Evening

The Cannon Gait, Edinburgh

Edinburgh based creative producer for dance, Dance Horizons have marked there 5th birthday with a special evening celebration held on Friday 8th November in the heart of Edinburgh’s old town. We at scotsgay arts were honoured to have been invited along to enjoy the evening.

Dance Horizons first emerged in 2013 when a small group of entrepreneurial dance graduates presented “Dance Horizons Industry Night”, this was an evening of dance development held in the North west of England in partnership with Dance UK which is now know as One Dance UK.

Horizons Dance 1

The launch of the companies “Innovations, Contemporary dance platform” came in November 2014 and has gone on to the be the flagship event for the company and is now an annual feature of there work with editions being performed at the Edinburgh Fringe and further afield around the UK.

As well as developing their own work in the dance art form they work as producer and co producer to bring some of the greatest emerging dance talent to the stage. 2019 has been a very busy year for the team at Horizon’s with Genesis– a double bill by Kennedy Muntanga Dance Theatre, London, Innovations Platform- presenting works by 8 artists/companies from the UK, Brittany & Spain. And Mastication- performance artwork by independent dance artist Paul Scott Bullen based in Northwest England all being part of Sold out Edinburgh Fringe run.

Horizons Dance 2

2020 is promising to be equally busy with Innovations Spring 2020 coming on Friday 1st May 2020 to
The Studio at the Festival Theatre Edinburgh, this is an evening of four contemporary dance works including a matinee showing aimed at dance students in training. This will be followed by Innovations EdFringe Edition Building on this year’s successful run, Innovations have confirmed it will return for the third consecutive year to Greenside Venues and will be expanded to a two-week run. Also, as part of the overall Fringe 2020 programme Kennedy Muntanga Dance Theatre Will return to Edinburgh with a double bill performance as part of the Edinburgh Fringe 2020. Horizons will also welcome Sketch Dance Theatre London as part of EdFringe 2020 at the Greenside Venues. Sketch is an emerging company of graduate artists from Roehampton University currently touring across the South of the UK. 2020 will then be rounded out by Innovations Winter Edition 2020 which will return to The Studio of the Festival Theatre in November for another exciting platform of contemporary works.

Its Certainly been a busy year for the company with an even bigger year planned! And the evening celebrations were completed with the announcement of the Innovations awards, the Innovations 2019 Award went to Unearthed Dance Company for there production of ‘You, Me & Them’ presented at Innovations Spring 2019 @ The Studio. The Innovations 2019 EdFringe Award went to Fuelled Dance Theatre for their production of “y.O.u” at Innovations EdFringe 2019 Greenside Venues . The big award of the night the Innovations Development Award 2019 was awarded to Peter Twyman Dance For the development of “Emotions” through Innovations Platforms across 2019.

Horizons Dance 3

We at Scotsgayarts also managed to sit down with Horizons Creative Director and Producer Oliver Anwyl as we asked him, what does next year ahead for the company mean to you? Oliver: “Next year is going to be such an exciting and action-packed year. Seeing these plans coming to fruition is rather overwhelming as we continue to expand. Being able to announce a year’s line up is something we hadn’t thought possible this time last year. It has not been an easy journey getting Dance Horizons to where it is now, and there are still obstacles to overcome. When I founded it, I was told by a lot of people it was a dead end, but five years later, here we are! I am so grateful to be supported by a group of incredible people who are as passionate about dance and its possibilities as I am.”

Horizons Dance 4

Thanks to all at Dance Horizons for a wonderful evening and this is definitely a company to keep an eye on through out 2020 and the years ahead! Here’s to what the future brings!

Dance Horizons will present work in 2020 in The Studio at the Festival Theatre Edinburgh and During the Edinburgh Fringe at the Greenside Venues, please check respective Websites for ticket details. To follow the work of the company go to