A port full of Theatre

June 13, 2017 | By | Reply More

Leith Festival theatre goes to its roots

There is a sense of getting right into the community from to the three major theatre offerings at this year’s Leith Festival, with new work from Citadel, Spartaki and Theatre Imperative.

All three grass-roots companies are presenting new writing, with the the emphasis for two of them – Citadel and Spartaki – being on work which reflects the people of Leith and the lives they live. or have lived.

The Dazzle Ship. Photo Citadel Arts

Meanwhile, Theatre Imperative are staging a new comedy, Ladies Day Out at the Dry Dock (Leith Links Bowling Pavilion). Celebrating “women’s solidarity, independence and love of mayhem”, it is set in a private box in a prestigious race course.

Philip Rainford’s second play for the Leith Festival, it follows the success of The Wee One in 2016 and sees Rainford joining forces again with director Adam Tomkins.

Citadel is staging a pair of new one-act plays at the Leith Dockers Club under the banner of Stories of the Sea.

Dazzle by Alan Mountford is directed by Liz Hare and is based on the true story of Eva Harriet Mackenzie who attended Edinburgh Art College, drove ambulances in WWI, painted the Dazzle designs which confused German U-boats and caught the eye of artist Norman Wilkinson who devised the Dazzle process.

In Whit Aboot the Wimmin, Jim Brown draws from local memories of Leith’s whaling industry and its impact on the community. His play is set in 1963 and explores the experiences of the Leith women whose men went on the last whaling trip.

Muriel of Leith. Pic: SpartaKi

Spartaki Theatre’s Muriel of Leith is based on the memories of Leithers of all ages, including residents of the Bield Care Group. Written by Jim Aitken it is adapted for the stage and directed by Karen Douglas.

It features the Shannon family, whose home has overlooked the mural on the gable end wall in North Junction Street for almost 30 years. In 2016 it continues to remind them both of their own family history, and that of Leith itself. Of how much has changed, and what remains the same.

Listings

Stories of the Sea
Leith Dockers Club, 17–17a Academy Street, EH6 7EE
Tuesday 13 – Thursday 15 June 2017
Evenings Tue, Thurs: 7.30pm, Matinee Weds: 2.30pm.
A double bill of new plays from Citadel Arts Group, inspired by the untold stories of women and Leith’s maritime legacy.
Dazzle by Alan Mountford is based on the true story of Eva Harriet Mackenzie. Directed by Liz Hare it features Andrea McKenzie, Megan Fraser, Charles Donnelly and Gregor Davidson.
Whit Aboot the Wimmen by Jim Brown is set in 1963 and explores the experiences of the Leith women whose men went on the last whaling trip. Directed by Mark Kydd it features Charles Donnelly, Laverne Edmonds, Rachael Keiller, Kirsty Punton and Charlie West.

Ladies Day Out
The Dry Dock, Leith Links Bowling Pavilion, Leith, EH6 7EZ
Tuesday 13 – Sunday 18 June 2017.
Evenings: 7.30pm.
Set in a private box at a prestigious race course, Ladies Day Out is a brand new comedy celebrating women’s solidarity, independence and love of mayhem from Theatre Imperative. With an entirely Edinburgh-based cast and crew, this is Philip Rainford’s second play for the Leith Festival following the success of The Wee One in 2016.

Muriel of Leith
Constitution Bar, 48-52 Constitution Street, EH6 6RS
Thursday 15 – Saturday 18 June 2017.
Evenings: 7.30pm.
The Shannon family home has overlooked the Mural on the gable end wall in North Junction Street for almost 30 years. In 2016 it continues to remind them both of their own family history, and that of Leith itself. Based on the memories of Leithers of all ages, written by Jim Aitken, adapted for stage and directed by Karen Douglas, the cast is Christine Dall, Sian Fiddimore, Caroline Mackellar, Martin MacLennan and Paul Murray. With music by Laura Mary McGarrigle (Gaze is Ghost).

ENDS

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