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National Theatre of Scotland at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2012

Greg Hemphill and Sean Biggerstaff in Appointment With the Wicker ManWe are looking forward to presenting two productions at this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Appointment with The Wicker Man returns after a successful Scottish tour earlier this year, with Greg Hemphill and all the original cast,  as does Molly Taylor’s, Love Letters to the Public Transport System, following Scottish tour dates and an acclaimed run as a work in progress in 2011. Both productions are being presented at the refurbished Assembly Rooms on George Street.

Since the National Theatre of Scotland’s launch in 2006, the Company has presented  six productions at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe: Black Watch (2006); Venus As A Boy (2007); Architecting (2008); Beautiful Burnout (2010) and The Wheel and The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart last year. All winners of  either a Herald Angel or a Scotsman Fringe First.

Appointment with The Wicker Man
Written by Greg Hemphill and Donald McLeary and directed by Vicky Featherstone

Having played to packed out houses throughout Scotland in February and March 2012, the Loch Parry Players return to wreak am dram havoc on the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

Co-written by and starring one of Scotland’s most popular performers, Greg Hemphill (Chewin’ the Fat ) as Lord Summerisle;  with Sean Biggerstaff (Harry Potter) as the TV Cop,  and featuring a top line-up of Scottish comic talent,  Appointment with the Wicker Man, is a new musical adaptation and an affectionate spoof homage to Robin Hardy’s cult film classic.  A little more Glee than Christopher Lee, the show takes audiences on a bawdy and hugely entertaining romp through the strange goings on in a small Scottish village, to the show’s incendiary finale.

Donald McLeary and Greg Hemphill have been collaborating together on various film and television projects since 2007. Their feature film project, The Sea Hag of the Western Isles, is currently in development; produced by Andrew Eaton, directed by Matt Lipsey with Robbie Coltrane and Peter Mullan attached to star. They are also developing a feature with Ecosse Films entitled Call Me Bill. Their BBC comedy Blue Haven is scheduled to shoot in April 2012 with Brown Eyed Boy/ Kudos, with Greg and Donald in central roles. Donald writes and performs in Radio 4 comedy Fags, Mags and Bags (Best Comedy – Writers Guild Award), currently in its fifth season.  He can also be seen every morning on CBeebies as Mickey John in Me Too!    

Vicky Featherstone is Artistic Director of the National Theatre of Scotland. She has directed many award-winning productions at the Edinburgh Festival including The Wheel by Zinnie Harris, 365 by David Harrower, The Drowned World by Gary Owen, Splendour by Abi Morgan and Crave by Sarah Kane.

Appointment With the Wicker Man is at Music Hall, Assembly Rooms, 54 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2LR, 1 -26 Aug. Find out more about the production and book tickets via www.nationaltheatrescotland.com

Appointment with The Wickerman is supported by Bank of Scotland Pioneering Partnership

                                                                                                   

Love Letters to the Public Transport System
Written and performed by Molly Taylor
Part of the Made in Scotland Showcase 2012

After debuting as a work-in-progress in 2011 and receiving rave reviews, Molly Taylor’s Love Letters to the Public Transport System returns to celebrate three extraordinary life -changing journeys.

Based on Molly Taylor’s quest to find the people who have the invaluable but often thankless task of working in the public transport industry, this  one woman show explores the ordinary and extraordinary journeys we make every day, and finally thanks the people who make them possible.

in telling her sweet and ravishing stories Taylor….offers a memorable portrait of Britain, rich in diversity, strewn with remarkable cities, and still underpinned by public services without which the fabric of our lives would simply collapse.” The Scotsman ****

this fragile and utterly beautiful piece of work reminds us of the reason we’re alive”         The Herald *****

Molly Taylor is an experienced performer and fledgling writer. A theatre studies graduate of Glasgow University, her theatre credits include Fringe First Winner The Caravan,  documentary theatre piece Counted, understudy Rita in the Educating Rita (West End) and the Menier Chocolate Factory’s Accomplice. In 2008 she was part of the National Theatre of Scotland’s Associate programme, based in the Learn Department, and it was during this time that she was given her first opportunity to develop a new way of working; to write and perform her own material.

Her experience as a performer in documentary and verbatim theatre led to an appetite for finding real stories from real people. As part of the National Theatre of Scotland’s Associate Programme she researched her first piece, A la Carte, a one-woman show about the nature of our dining experiences: the final piece was site specific, staged as a dinner party with the audience cast as ‘guests’. Molly also took part in the Bank of Scotland Emerge Programme which supports and nurtures promising theatre-makers.

Love Letters to the Public Transport System is at Studio Once, Assembly Rooms, 54 George Street, Edinburgh EH2 2LR, 3 -26 Aug. Find out more about the production and book tickets via www.nationaltheatrescotland.com

Born to Run

The National Theatre of Scotland often supports additional productions at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. This year, we are supporting Gary McNair’s Born to Run.  Inspired by a true story, Born to Run explores the ordinary and extraordinary journeys the body and brain can go on when they are tested beyond the point of exhaustion as one woman tells of her attempts to escape death by pushing her body to new limits. Everyone is running from something. The question is – when is it time to stop?

This critically acclaimed production by one of Scotland’s most exciting young writers was originally produced for a Play, a Pie and a Pint at Òran Mór.  Born to Run is at the Traverse Theatre from 21 to 26 August.


Social Media Call for An Appointment with The Wicker Man

Social media users are invited to take pictures and film footage of the National Theatre of Scotland’s production of An Appointment With The Wicker Man on Friday 17th February at 1145am for a 12pm start at the Macrobert Arts Centre, Stirling.

This is an exclusive opportunity to photograph and film two scenes from the production and to meet the famous Loch Parry Players. The cast and creative team will also be available for interviews.

Based on the cult film, An Appointment With The Wicker Man is co-written by Greg Hemphill and Donald McLeary and directed by Vicky Featherstone.

The cast includes Greg Hemphill and Paul Riley who worked together on Chewin’ The Fat and the spin off Still Game. They are joined on stage by Sean Biggerstaff who played Oliver Wood in the Harry Potter films.

The full cast is Sean Biggerstaff, Jimmy Chisholm, Greg Hemphill, Johnny McKnight, Sally Reid, Paul Riley and Rosalind Sydney.

Places are limited so if you would like to attend please register in advance by emailing andrew.neilson@nationaltheatrescotland.com

The first twenty people to register will be given a free ticket to see the whole show on Friday 17th February at 7.30pm.

In the meantime why not tweet about production using the hashtag #wickerman or find out what happens at a social media call.

The National Theatre of Scotland’s production of An Appointment With The Wicker Man is supported by Bank of Scotland and tours to His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen from 21-25 Feb, Theatre Royal, Glasgow 28 Feb-3 March, Eden Court, Inverness 6-10 March and The Alhambra, Dunfermline 21-24 March. More information at www.nationaltheatrescotland.com