Edinburgh International Festival’s digital programme offers free full-length performances for first time

For the first time in its 74-year history, the Edinburgh International Festival is to give audiences the chance to tune in from the comfort of their own homes – with 18 full-length performances available to watch for free online.

Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 2:09 pm
Updated Wednesday, 14th July 2021, 2:18 pm

Highlights of the digital programme include Scottish superstar violinist Nicola Benedetti playing alongside a specially selected ensemble in Stravinsky’s The Soldier’s Tale (online from 26 August), and a new production of Ariadne auf Naxos, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra and featuring German soprano Dorothea Röschmann (29 August).

Other free-to-view events include a thrilling musical partnership between Argentinian-born cellist Sol Gabetta, fiery Hong Kong-born conductor Elim Chan and the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (25 November).

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Violist Nicola Benedetti will perform alongside a specially selected ensemble as part of the Edinburgh International Fesitval.

Elsewhere in the programme, pianist Isata Kanneh-Mason and Russian-born conductor Vasily Petrenko join forces with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to perform Clara Schumann’s Piano Concerto and Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony (7 October).

Acclaimed Edinburgh pianist Malcolm Martineau and friends will celebrate the 250th anniversary of Sir Walter Scott’s birth with a concert inspired by the poet’s famous verse (online from 15 August), and writer and director Hannah Lavery leads an artistic response to the 2015 death in Scottish police custody of Sheku Bayoh in the National Theatre of Scotland’s Lament for Sheku Bayoh (online from 25 August).

As part of the EIF’s ongoing commitment to accessibility, many of the performances featured in the digital programme offer audio description, captioning or British Sign Language interpretation.

Selected performances from the programme will also be broadcast, streamed or hosted on classical music radio stations BBC Radio 3 and Classic FM and music streaming service Apple Music.

Fergus Linehan, Director of the Edinburgh International Festival, said: “We are looking forward to reuniting artists and audiences once more in Edinburgh this summer, yet we appreciate that some people may not be able to join us in person this year.

“For the first time in the festival’s history, we are delighted to offer an extensive programme of digital works for audiences across the UK and around the world to enjoy from home.

“We are hugely grateful to abrdn for supporting the At Home programme and helping us to offer these extraordinary full-length performances free of charge.”

Visit www.eif.co.uk/at-home for full details of Edinburgh International Festival At Home.


11 August: Talisk

11 August: Plays for Today: Women's Playwriting in Scotland

14 August: Chotto Xenos

15 August: Malcolm Martineau: Walter Scott 250

17 August: You Bury Me

20 August: Dancing in the Streets: Alice Ripoll

20 August: Dancing in the Streets: Gregory Maqoma

20 August: Dancing in the Streets: Janice Parker

20 August: Dancing in the Streets: Omar Rajeh

22 August: Chineke! Orchestra with William Eddins and Andrea Baker

25 August: Lament for Sheku Bayoh

27 August: A Soldier's Tale

29 August: Ariadne auf Naxos

7 October: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with Vasily Petrenko and Isata Kanneh-Mason

14 October: Zehetmair Quartet

28 October: A Toast to the People - Inua Ellams and Saul Williams

4 November: Fatma Said and Malcolm Martineau

11 November: A Toast to the People - performers to be confirmed

25 November: Royal Scottish National Orchestra with Elim Chan and Sol Gabetta

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