Festivals and events reveal reboot plans under under Scotland's new route map
Festivals and events across Scotland have revealed plans to reboot in the wake of the country’s new route map out of lockdown being revealed by Nicola Sturgeon.
Outdoor locations in Edinburgh, Fife and Inverness are already lined up to bring back audiences after the First Minister announced that the first events could be staged with capacity restrictions in place from mid-May.
Although guidelines for events in Scotland have yet to be finalised, outdoor events for up to 4000 people are due to go ahead in England from the same date.
Eden Court, in Inverness, has announced plans to stage a three-month festival in its grounds which is expected to provide employment to around 100 staff and performers between July and September.
Live music, DJ sets and food and drink are expected to be on offer as part of Under Canvas, which was first staged at the venue in 2018 and will again be staged in collaboration with the traditional arts group Fèis Rois.
Organisers of the East Neuk Festival in Fife are planning to stage “al fresco” shows as part of its programme over the first weekend in July.
A “band in a van” will travel around the Fife coastline staging pop-up performances, a large-scale labyrinth will be created in the grounds of Kellie Castle and artists are being commissioned to create vast “beach drawings” as part of the event.
The grounds of Hopetoun House, a stately home at South Queensferry, in Edinburgh, has been lined up for an outdoor drive-in event dedicated to Harry Potter and Batman movies for the end of May bank holiday weekend.
Organisers of Fly Open Air Festival, an open-air dance and techno music festival staged annually in Princes Street Gardens in Edinburgh, say they already sold the event out.
East Neuk Festival founder Donald MacDonald: “Like everyone who loves live music, the lack of it in these past 12 months has been a terrible loss.
“It’s also been very sad to see the plight of so many musicians who have given us so much joy over the years, and suddenly found their opportunities to perform devastatingly curtailed.
“It’s a huge pleasure to present this adventurous 2021 festival and have so many familiar faces returning to the festival to play and sing.”
Eden Court said its would be designed to “maintain the spirit of socialising and shared enthusiasm for the arts” while mitigating risks posed by the pandemic.
James Mackenzie-Blackman, Eden Court’s chief executive, said: “After such a challenging 12 months it’s fitting that in the one-year anniversary of closure that we are able to announce our planned return of Under Canvas in 2021. We can’t wait to welcome everyone back.”
Oli Norman, chief executive of Itison, promoters of the Hopetoun House film events, said: “Finally, we can get back to delivering amazing experiences.
“We're thrilled to announce an epic line up against the stunning backdrop of Hopetoun House.
“Having pioneered Scotland's first socially distanced drive-in last Summer, and alongside the First Minister's lockdown easing plan, we're confident it's going to be a fresh start for great times ahead.”
Tom Ketley, director of the 3500-capacity Fly Open Air festival said: "We've seen a huge demand for tickets with young people just desperate to get back to events when it is safe to do so.”