08 September, 2010

A Day in the Life of...Temporary Photos Officer, Erin Hickey

Photo: Erin with Lemi Ponifasio

Picture this with Erin Hickey, Temporary Festival Photos officer...

I do like a good picture story. It might first appear that taking a picture during the Festival in Edinburgh is straightforward; there is always something going on and all you have to do is point the camera and shoot. That’s not always the case. There is a lot of planning that goes into making a photo call run smoothly, from brainstorming ideas, contacting performers, tour managers and venues to get permission, drafting invites to photo calls, speaking to photographers and making travel arrangements. But the end result of all of the hard work and organising makes the Festival experience worthwhile. And the best part is seeing the photographs in print (including a few front pages!) and online.

One of my favourite experiences of the Edinburgh International Festival this year was meeting a very talented designer named Charlotte Helyar who designed and created a remarkable gown made completely out of Edinburgh International Festival brochures. The dress was worn by a soloist from the opening concert El Niño. I was incredibly proud that the team work and dedication paid off when a picture of Kelley wearing the dress was featured on the front cover of the Scotsman.

Part of what makes the Festival so great is working with a team of people who are as passionate about theatre as you are; Charlotte Anderson, my colleague in the Photos team and I have had a great time, looking after photographers at different venues and getting to see dress rehearsals of the fantastic shows on this year (my favourites being Porgy and Bess at the Festival Theatre and hearing the RSNO play Rhapsody in Blue during their rehearsals for Rhapsodies in Red, White and Blue at the Usher Hall.) It was great fun to literally be backstage and meeting some fantastically talented performers – including, I might add, striking my best ballet pose with the Alonzo King Lines Ballet!

You can see a selection of Festival photos here.

07 September, 2010

A Day in the Life of...Temporary Festival Press Assistant, Lucy Howe

Our fabulous temporary Festival Press Assistant, Lucy Howe, talks kangaroos, photo calls and why she was nicknamed 'Girl on the Street'...

Interning at the Edinburgh International Festival has been a great experience and the press office has been especially fun. We’ve had ‘Thinking-Hat Saturdays’ where the entire office have worn sailor hats made from newspaper, Australia Day where an Australian accent is compulsory once through our office doors, and copious supplies of coffee, cake, biscuits and haribo placed strategically on my desk – yum.

Labelled ambiguously as ‘festival press assistant’ (but also apparently ‘girl on street’ – in the nicest possible way!) I’ve been given numerous different roles, the most random being the distribution of 10 inflatable Kangaroos around Edinburgh. But mostly I’ve attended photo-calls (keeping an eye on unruly photographers – “No, the door labelled ‘STAGE ACCESS, DO NOT ENTER’ is NOT the door to the auditorium...”) helped our Broadcast Liaison when she’s super busy (which included a 4-second appearance on the BBC Culture Show – my moment of fame!) and even taken part in a photo-call (I was the US Flag behind Jonathan Mills – my 2nd moment of fame!).

I have also been an honorary member of the digital marketing desk which has allowed me to interview some of our luckier stars of this year’s festival such as the Labeque sisters and Alonzo King for our audioboo, recorded audience voxpops for the longer-running productions, and looked after the ever-increasing different bodies of social networking sites such as blipfoto and flickr. Phew. It’s been busy, but also great fun and given me the chance to see many amazing performances from around the world, and already I can’t wait for next year.

Over and out.

Listen to the Artist interviews and audience vox pops from Festival 2010 here.

06 September, 2010

What you thought: Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert

We joined the crowds at the Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert 2010 to find out what they enjoy about the event...


03 September, 2010

A Day in the Life of...Lynsey Shovlin, Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert Co-ordinator

Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert Co-ordinator, Lynsey Shovlin, tells all as the firework preparations start to heat up...

I am excited, I am nervous, I am running on adrenaline, I am happy, I am sad and I am now dreaming about the Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert in my sleep! My whirlwind romance with the Edinburgh International Festival is nearly over and I have been well and truly swooned by the people and projects I have been involved with, no more so than the looming Festival finale – The Bank of Scotland Fireworks Concert.

Preparations for this dazzling display of artistic delights on Sunday 5th September at 9pm are going exceptionally well. The most grueling task recently… I suppose sampling Café Hub’s ‘fireworks cupcakes’ which are on sale now was a chore. It’s not an easy job sampling delicious cake all day long but the press office felt they could take a hit for the team on this occasion!

Before I say my final goodbyes, here are some of my tips for enjoying the Fireworks Concert;

  • Be early to find a good spot in Princes Street Gardens or, if you don’t have a ticket, at Inverleith Park.
  • If you have your own secret spot for watching the Fireworks Concert, don’t forget to tune in to Radio Forth on 97.3 FM and 1548 AM to hear the Scottish Chamber Orchestra perform live.
  • Remember to stay connected to us by including us in your tweets - #BOSfireworks
  • Wrap up warm and take a bin bag to sit on incase the ground is muddy or damp.
  • Enjoy the evening with friends and family - take pictures which you will remember for years to come and treat yourself to some tasty ‘fireworks cupcakes’ from the Hub Café!

Now all that is left for you to do is pack a picnic and keep your fingers crossed for the weather. In the meantime, I can guarantee that everyone at the Edinburgh International Festival, Bank of Scotland and Scottish Chamber Orchestra will continue to work their socks off to bring you a very glamorous, exuberant and special event to celebrate another Festival finale.

What the Audience thought: Bliss

We were at The Festival Theatre, Edinburgh on Thursday 2 September asking the audience what they thought about Opera Australia's Bliss...


Artist Interview: Christine Brewer

We spoke to American Soprano Christine Brewer about returning to Edinburgh and how she chose the programme for her concert at the Usher Hall on Friday 3 September...


What the Audience thought: Paco Peña Flamenco Dance Company

We were at The Edinburgh Playhouse on Thursday 2 September asking the audience what they thought of Paco Peña Flamenco Dance Company...


02 September, 2010

Artist Interview: Duo Sol

We spoke to Caroline Allmente and Miki Tsunoda, who together make up Duo Sol, ahead of their concert at The Queen's Hall on Friday 3 September at 11am.


Artist Interview: David Watkin

We spoke to Cellist David Watkin ahead of his concert with the Tokyo Quartet on Thursday 2 September at the Queen's Hall.