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2017 Made in Scotland Showcase Programme Announced

Published: 24 May 2017

Transgender choirs, police van drama, Idi Amin's impact in Scotland, refugee stories and record collection conversations among the highlights revealed as part of 2017 Made in Scotland Showcase

Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs Fiona Hyslop launches the Made In Scotland programme with The Last Post performer Tom Poulson
Cabinet Secretary Fiona Hyslop launches Made in Scotland with The Last Post writer and performer Tom Poulson, photo: Neil Hanna

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs, today announced the companies and artists selected for the 9th year of Made in Scotland - a curated showcase of music, theatre and dance performed during the 70th Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world’s greatest platform for creative freedom of expression. Since its inception in 2009, Made in Scotland has funded 125 companies, ensembles and artists to showcase over 180 shows. The onward touring fund has enabled 65 productions to tour across six continents, visiting over 35 countries.

This year's showcase will support 24 shows at the 2017 Edinburgh Festival Fringe who have been chosen by a panel of experts from the Scottish and international performing arts community. The programme represents a mix of established companies and vibrant emerging artists producing theatre, dance, children’s shows and music in Scotland today. From tense police drama written by former policeman Adam McNamara, to Robert Mapplethorpe inspired dance and a starring role for the record collection of musician MJ McCarthy's Great Aunt Kathleen, the 2017 Made in Scotland Showcase will build on the success of previous years by showcasing some of the very best theatre, dance and music Scotland has to offer. Playwrights’ Studio Scotland also return with a programme of talks and workshops to support the showcase.

The wealth of talent working in Scotland's performing arts sector is reflected in a strong line-up of companies, ensembles and artists including; National Theatre of Scotland, Scottish Dance Theatre, Gary McNair, Capercaille's Donald Shaw, Andy Canon, Stellar Quines, FK Alexander, WHYTE, Dogstar Theatre Company, Pauline Goldsmith, Capella Novella, Withered Hand, Iklan, Savage Mansion, Joan Clevillé Dance, Caroline Bowditch and Company, Sean Shibe, Modern Studies and Lomond Campbell, Utter, Tom Poulson, children's favourites The Polar Bears, MJ McCarthy and Red Bridge Arts, Apphia Campbell, Robbie Thomson and Cryptic.

Playwrights’ Studio Scotland's TalkFest 2017 explores what stimulates the artists behind this year’s Made in Scotland showcase and wider Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The sessions are led and chaired by some of our leading playwrights and theatre-makers including; Rona Munro, Nicola McCartney, Philip Howard, Adura Onashile, Orla O'Loughlin, Pauline Goldsmith, Adam McNamara, Joe Douglas, Michael John McCarthy and Martin O'Connor.

In this 70th year, we celebrate the founding international principles of the festivals by connecting Scottish artists to national and global audiences. The Made in Scotland showcase highlights the wealth of talented artists working across music, theatre and dance drawing them to the attention of the wider world.- Laura Mackenzie-Stuart, Head of Theatre, Creative Scotland

Made in Scotland is a partnership between the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, Creative Scotland, the Federation of Scottish Theatre and the Scottish Music Centre. The showcase is supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals' Expo Fund with part of the funding designed to enable Scottish companies, ensembles and artists to take up onward international touring opportunities from contacts made during the Festival Fringe.

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs said: “Made in Scotland is an integral part of the Fringe Festival, showcasing excellent, bold and innovative work from Scotland to local, national and international audiences. We have contributed almost £5 million to Made in Scotland through the Scottish Government’s EXPO fund since it began, and it has enabled Scottish theatre, dance and music acts to perform around the world. This year’s showcase features a rich variety of stimulating stories and talented artists, and I look forward to seeing performances in August.”

Shona McCarthy, Chief Executive, Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society said: “This is an auspicious year for the Fringe as it celebrates its 70th anniversary. A festival which started because eight companies, six of whom were Scottish, simply wanted to present their work to audiences.  70 years on and the Made in Scotland showcase provides an incredible opportunity for Scottish based artists across dance, theatre and music to highlight their work at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, supporting them to take advantage of the opportunities presented by a festival of this scale and internationalism taking place in Scotland. As well as providing a platform to raise their profile and connect with local and international industry and media, Made in Scotland opens up opportunities for onward international touring giving shows a life beyond the Fringe. I am delighted this platform exists through partnership with Creative Scotland, Federation of Scottish Theatre and Scottish Music Centre and with support from the Scottish Government’s Expo Fund.”

Laura Mackenzie-Stuart, Head of Theatre, Creative Scotland said: “In this 70th year, we celebrate the founding international principles of the festivals by connecting Scottish artists to national and global audiences.  The Made in Scotland showcase highlights the wealth of talented artists working across music, theatre and dance drawing them to the attention of the wider world.  We are rightfully proud of the work made by artists living in Scotland and thankful that beyond August the Onward Touring Fund element of the Scottish Government’s Expo Fund enables artists to extend the advantage of performing at the Fringe by supporting them to take up invitations to perform internationally.”

Hazel Wotherspoon, Interim Director, Federation of Scottish Theatre said: “The Federation of Scottish Theatre has been involved in Made in Scotland since the inception of the showcase and we are very excited about the increasing success and recognition of the showcase among the promoters and programmers as well as the general public. This year, as we celebrate the 70th year of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Made in Scotland showcase yet again offers a wide and varied programme of world-class theatre, dance and music.”

Gill Maxwell, Executive Director, Scottish Music Centre said: “Working in partnership with the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, Creative Scotland and the Federation of Scottish Theatre, the Scottish Music Centre is delighted that in this 70th anniversary year of Edinburgh Festival Fringe, this year’s showcase presents eight world-class music shows from Scotland. Highlighting the quality and diversity of Scotland’s composers, songwriters, musicians and artists, this impressive line-up showcases a wide range of music genres. From new choral works and contemporary classical virtuoso performances via emerging indie artists, thrilling live soundtracks and multimedia presentations, this year’s programme truly offers something for every music-lover.”

See the full programme online at www.madeinscotlandshowcase.com follow on Twitter @MadeinScotShows and connect on Facebook at Facebook.com/MadeInScotland


For further information, images and interviews please contact Owen O'Leary on 07815 992 658 or email owen@ohreally.co.uk.

Notes to Editors

2017 Made in Scotland Showcase Shows

ADAM presented by National Theatre of Scotland

Conceived for the stage and directed by Cora Bissett and written by Frances Poet, Adam is the remarkable, true story of a young trans man having to make that choice and begin his journey. From Egypt to Scotland, it charts Adam’s fight across borders and genders to find a place to call home. In a world first, Adam features a 120-strong, international world choir of trans individuals from across the globe which has been uniquely integrated into this remarkable multimedia production.

BRIGHT COLOURS ONLY presented by Pauline Goldsmith and Marshall Cordell

Sadly missed after a decade pushing up the daisies, Pauline Goldsmith resurrects her legendary Irish wake. This once-in-a-lifetime theatrical send-off was a huge hit at the Fringe back when Pauline could squeeze into a size ten shroud. Her polished coffin has since toured from Belfast to Brazil. So pull up a chair, grab a sandwich and enjoy a dram at this wickedly funny funeral!

ECHOES AND TRACES presented by Cappella Nova

Echoes and Traces presents eight new choral works, developed in response to one of Scotland’s oldest pieces of music, a 900-year-old plain-song fragment from Orkney that celebrates St Magnus: Nobilis Humilis. The new works are written by eight of Scotland’s most eminent composers: Sally Beamish, Rory Boyle, Stuart MacRae, Aidan O’Rourke, Ailie Robertson, Savourna Stevenson, Hanna Tuulikki and Matthew Whiteside. World-renowned choral group Cappella Nova, perform the new works, in one of the most significant Scottish cultural events in 2017.

FAIRICH: LIVE presented by WHYTE

Fairich: Live is an immersive audio-visual experience by Gaelic electronica duo WHYTE. Their album, Fairich, released in October 2016, contains new arrangements of rarely-heard 17th- and 18th-century Gaelic songs as well as original compositions, and has drawn comparisons with the likes of Sigur Rós and Martyn Bennett.

(I COULD GO ON SINGING) OVER THE RAINBOW FK ALEXANDER with Okishima Island Tourist Association

FK ALEXANDER returns with her Total Theatre Award-winning sell-out 2016 show. FK sings live to the recording of the last time Judy Garland sang Over the Rainbow four months before her death against a wall of noise music. This performance is an intimate, interactive experience of undivided attention and love, for a small number of audiences at a time. Stand hand in hand with FK, and witness others do the same. With live accompaniment from Glasgow-based noise band Okishima Island Tourist Association.

IS THIS A DAGGER? THE STORY OF MACBETH by Andy Cannon and William Shakespeare

Presented by Andy Cannon with Red Bridge Arts

By the pricking of my thumb, something wicked this way comes. Andy Cannon tells Shakespeare’s classic, taking audiences on a thousand-year journey from fact to fiction and back again.

LETTERS TO MORRISSEY by Gary McNair. Presented by Traverse Theatre Company in association with Tron Theatre

It’s 1997. You’re 11. You’re sad, lonely and scared of doing anything that would get you singled out by the hopeless, angry people in your hometown. One day you see a man on telly. He’s mumbling, yet electrifying. He sings: ‘I am human and I need to be loved, just like everybody else does’. You become obsessed with him. You write to him. A lot. It’s 2017. You find those letters and ask yourself: ‘Has the world changed, or have I changed?’. Gary McNair returns to the Traverse after his award-winning sell-out show A Gambler’s Guide to Dying.

NOTHING EVER HAPPENS HERE (NEHH) presents: Withered Hand, Iklan and Savage Mansion

A live, eclectic set from three contemporary Scottish artists. Summerhall’s unique and enchanting Dissection Room will see NEHH team up with the Made in Scotland Showcase for an evening of innovative music. Withered Hand headline in full-band format, while new collaborative force Iklan combines the talents of Law Holt, Young Fathers co-producer Timothy London and Leith Congregational Choir. The night kicks off with rising indie-rock quartet Savage Mansion.

PLAN B FOR UTOPIA presented by Joan Clevillé Dance

You have a plan, and then you don’t. You have a dream, and then you wake up. You fall in love, and your heart gets broken. The question is: do you pick up the pieces and try again? Tipping between humour and pathos, Plan B for Utopia is a fresh and original combination of dance, theatre and storytelling exploring the role that imagination and creativity can play as a catalyst for change.

PROCESS DAY by Sharon Eyal and Gai Behar presented by Scottish Dance Theatre

A sensory experience transforming dancers into sleek, androgynous, nocturnal beings guided through shadows by a futuristic techno soundtrack. Pulsating movements capture the universal drive of striving for fulfilment and release. This darkly delightful combination of cutting-edge choreography and club culture leaves you feeling its grip long after the piece is over. Award-winning duo Eyal and Behar have created a stream of critically acclaimed works for some of the world’s leading companies including Batsheva Dance, Nederlands Dans Theater and Carte Blanche.

SCOTLAND’S WILD HEART presented by Donald Shaw

Folk traditions meet orchestral grandeur in this audio-visual spectacular. A world-class ensemble led by award-winning composer Donald Shaw (Capercaillie) features the cream of Scotland’s musicians, including Patsy Reid (Fiddle), Michael McGoldrick (Flute & Pipes), Sorren MacLean (Guitars), James MacKintosh (Percussion) and a handpicked string section led by Grit orchestrator Greg Lawson (Fiddle). They will perform Shaw’s stunning soundtrack live to specially edited HD clips of the sublime Maramedia/BBC nature film Scotland’s Wild Heart, immersing you in the landscape and seasons of Scotland.

SNIGEL AND FRIENDS presented by Caroline Bowditch and Company

Snigel, the inquisitive snail, is preparing to go on an adventure. Before they set off, join Snigel in her cozy home underneath the leafy canopy; a colourful and sensory world where Snigel’s insect friends come to visit. They dance and play games in the undergrowth and help Snigel pack for their journey while listening to live music, singing lullabies and uncovering secret treasures. An inviting new dance piece for children up to 12 months old and their grown-ups.

SoftLOUD presented by Sean Shibe

SoftLOUD is acoustic and electric, ancient and modern, traditional and innovative. Sean Shibe’s new show brings together contemporary classic Electric Counterpoint (Steve Reich), with mellow, old Scottish tunes; the driving New York sound of Julia Wolfe’s LAD (originally for nine bagpipes)

plays against the gentle melancholy of Peter Maxwell Davies’ hugely popular Farewell to Stromness. Join him as he goes electric, fusing ancient Scotland with pulsating modern New York.

SOUNDING presented by Modern Studies and Lomond Campbell with Pumpkinseeds chamber orchestra in association with the Glad Cafe

Two of the most progressive and highly regarded new Scottish acts present their unique brand of pastoral and lyrical pop, enhanced by intricate arrangements played by renowned ten-piece string section the Pumpkinseeds, with brass and voices, in what promises to be a spectacle of contemporary indie talent.

STAND BY presented by Utter in association with The Byre Theatre, St Andrews

Four Police Officers sit in a riot van. Called out to a domestic dispute, which may turn violent, they are on stand by; waiting to enter a flat where a man is wielding a samurai sword. We wait with them, experiencing the relationships forged through the stress of the job and the turmoil of being caught between following orders and protecting themselves. Written by a former Police Officer (Adam McNamara), Stand By shows the modern-day Police Service laid bare. A unique performance, audiences are asked to wear single-earpiece headphones, as Police Officers do, to tell this urgent story in a multi-sensory way.

THE LAST POST presented by Tom Poulson with live electronics by Alistair MacDonald

Trumpet, electronics and text. One man’s love letters from the front line. Towards the close of WW2, Army Signaller Dennis Marshall wrote a series of moving letters to his fiancée, tracing his journey and his experiences. Dennis’ grandson, trumpeter Tom Poulson, composer Alistair MacDonald and director Susan Worsfold, explore these letters in an extraordinary immersive performance, with music reflecting the technology and sounds of the era. Inspired by the Last Post bugle call, the work explores war and memory in a very personal piece, set in the round, where audiences can experience the letters together.

THE LAST QUEEN OF SCOTLAND by Jaimini Jethwa presented by Stellar Quines

A Stellar Quines production commissioned and supported by the National Theatre of Scotland and Dundee Rep. 1972, Idi Amin ordered the expulsion of Ugandan-Asians under a 90-day deadline. From Uganda to Dundee, a woman grows up knowing nothing about her homeland haunted by Amin’s impact on her destiny. Returning to Uganda years later she confronts his ghost. This is one story from a community in exile that sheds light on a unique period of untold history. Performed to a live soundtrack [Patricia Panther, Glasgow Girls] through the street sounds of Dundonian dialect as a homage to Jaimini’s city “the D”.

THE POLAR BEARS GO UP presented by The Polar Bears and Unicorn Theatre

The Polar Bears are moving up in the world. They’ve lost their balloon and they need to get it back.

It’s time to get up, step up, climb up, jump up. One thing’s for sure, the only way is up! These lovable Polar Bears are intrepid explorers, famous for their wild expeditions. Now they are climbing trees, jumping on clouds and reaching for the stars as they race up to space. Of course, they’ll stop for sandwiches on the way! Recommended age guideline: 2-5 years

THE SKY IS SAFE presented by Dogstar Theatre Company

They meet on an Istanbul street, she a Syrian refugee, he a privileged westerner. What follows is an intimate yet epic play of war and displacement, identity and power, choice and its absence; a story of beauty, brutality and love. Writer & performer Matthew Zajac and director Ben Harrison, creators of the multi-award winning The Tailor of Inverness, combine with composer Pippa Murphy, video artist Tim Reid and Syrian designer and artist Nihad Al Turk.

TURNTABLE | EDINBURGH presented by Michael John McCarthy and Red Bridge Arts

Turntable started when MJ McCarthy and his Great Aunt Kathleen - 55 years his senior - connected over a stack of vinyl. Since then the Turntable team have toured her record case around Scotland, inviting listeners of all ages to investigate its contents whilst reflecting on the importance of music in their lives. At this year’s Fringe, the Turntable invitation is extended to the people of Edinburgh. Stories and memories will be gathered at workshops throughout the city. These encounters will inform a series of performance events featuring special guests and a soundtrack chosen by you.

TUTUMUCKY by Botis Seva presented by Scottish Dance Theatre

Powerful and complex, TuTuMucky explores how we’re shaped by the world around us, searches for peace in chaos and celebrates revolt against social order, hierarchies, and the regiments of modern daily life. Blurring the boundaries between ballet, contemporary, and hip hop technique, this new work challenges traditional convention to offer a distinctively innovative form of dance. A fresh, rhythmic, and explosive journey to places both familiar and strange set to an original musical backdrop by beat producer Torben Lars Sylvest.

VELVET PETAL: BEDROOM by Fleur Darkin presented Scottish Dance Theatre

Tough girls and pretty boys living life in the margins, dreaming about being at the centre. This bespoke extract from the full-length production explores the transformative power of beauty, created out of whatever is on the bedroom floor. Bringing us into a space of fluid identity, the dancers experiment, seduce and philosophise through their bodies, clothing, and ideas. Velvet Petal is inspired by the life-cycle of the Monarch butterfly, Robert Mapplethorpe’s polaroids and is set to a fresh dance punk score.

WOKE by Apphia Campbell and Meredith Yarbrough presented by Play the Spotlight Theatre

From the creator of the hit show Black Is The Color of My Voice, comes a new story about the 20th-century African-American experience. Set to original music and traditional gospel and blues; TWO women, 42 years apart become involved in the struggle for civil rights. One, a notorious Black Panther; the other, a present day university student. Both challenge the American Justice system, become criminalized through political activism; and ultimately are faced with a choice to stay and fight or to flee.

XFRMR by Robbie Thomson - a Cryptic commission for Sonica

In 1891 the genius inventor Nikola Tesla tamed lightning with his Tesla coil, a device that renders electricity visible. Artist Robbie Thomson harnesses the sonic capabilities of the Tesla coil to create a work as arresting as the scent of burning ozone and as lively as electricity itself. By synthesising sound waves that alter the frequency of the coil’s output, Thomson produces distorted tones and harsh percussive stabs that are accompanied by reactive projections, resulting in a physical assault on the senses.

Made in Scotland Showcase 2017 Programming Panels


  • Laura Cameron-Lewis: Head of Dance, Creative Scotland
  • Forrina Chen: Founder and Artistic Director of The A.S.K.
  • Laura Mackenzie-Stuart: Head of Theatre, Creative Scotland
  • Yasmin Sulaiman: Editor & Books Editor, The List
  • Rupert Thomson: Senior Programmer, Performance and Dance, Southbank Centre
  • Christian Watty: Programming Team/Associate Director, Internationale Tanzmesse NRW
  • Neil Webb: Director Theatre and Dance, British Council
  • Hazel Wotherspoon:  Interim Director, Federation of Scottish Theatre
  • Chair (non voting): Shona McCarthy: Chief Executive, Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society

MUSIC Panel:

  • Vic Galloway: BBC Broadcaster, journalist and author
  • Kim Macari: Professional jazz musician and Chair of Jazz From Scotland
  • Alan Morrison: Head of Music, Creative Scotland
  • Gill Maxwell: Executive Director, Scottish Music Centre
  • Simon Thoumire: Musician and Creative Director, Hands Up For Trad
  • Nicolas Žekulin: Chief Executive and Artistic Director, National Youth Orchestras of Scotland
  • Chair (non voting): Shona McCarthy: Chief Executive, Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society

Federation of Scottish Theatre (FST)

FST is the membership and development body for professional dance, opera and theatre in Scotland. Representing over 200 organisations and individuals, FST brings the sector together to speak with a collective voice, to share resources and expertise and to promote collaborative working. www.scottishtheatre.org

Scottish Music Centre (SMC)

Championing Scotland’s Music – Past, Present and Future

The Scottish Music Centre is at the heart of the national music industry in all its forms. From preserving our musical heritage with the ever-expanding archive, to representing contemporary composers and musicians, the SMC stands at the forefront. Our aim is to champion the wealth of talent that abounds in Scotland’s musical community by actively promoting music locally, nationally and internationally. www.scottishmusiccentre.com

Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society

The Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, the charity that underpins the Edinburgh Festival Fringe was established in 1958, eleven years after the birth of the Fringe in 1947, when the first performers turned up uninvited to perform at the Edinburgh International Festival. The Fringe is an open access festival – any artist or company can take part regardless of their experience or success and the festival is not programmed or run by an artistic director or any selection body. As a registered charity, the Fringe Society exists to support all participants, industry professionals, media and audience members who attend the Fringe from all around the world, and to produce accurate and up-to-date information and ticketing for audiences, and to raise the profile of the festival as a whole. www.edfringe.com

Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here.  We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life.  We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com Follow us @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland