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Last Updated: Wednesday, 30 August 2006, 09:23 GMT 10:23 UK
Edinburgh Fringe diary
Stars, stand-ups and students are descending on the Scottish capital for the annual arts extravaganza.

For six weeks, Edinburgh celebrates the arts in every conceivable venue the city can supply.

Organisers, performers and locals taking part in the city's multiple festivals share their experiences.


Edinburgh Festival Fringe
It's final call for punters. Photo: Giles Moss

Charles Pamment, venue manager

Finally, it's all over for another year. The theatre companies are packing up, the trains are full.
There has a big emphasis on lack of audiences this year. It does seem that most spectators are locals or simply performers watching performers, not good news for the future.

Personally we've had a great year, award nominations and all. I'm off to the Stage awards this evening to see if one of our shows, Sing a Song of Blackbirds, has won the best ensemble.
I noticed one of the diary entries from Matt Adler about Blunderbus Theatre Company. Can I suggest that he thinks ahead a little for next year and rents his flat out, just like his neighbour. It always amazes me how many locals rant from the roof tops about how the festival disturbs their otherwise perfect world.

Wayne Garnett, technician

Looking forward to getting home now, Manchester City have just beaten Arsenal so I'm on a real high. Should have everything packed up by the early hours of Monday, and will drive south on Monday afternoon.
I wonder if the council read my last insert? The bins under North Bridge were emptied the other day, and Scottish Water even turned up to wash down the urine-ridden close next to the Carlton Hotel. Shame it's about three weeks too late!

Bill Davies, director, Blunderbus Theatre Company

It's hard to believe that we're now at the end of the festival.

The festival has been really kind to us this year: we've had 24 sell-out shows, and 5-star reviews. Everybody on our professional team has worked so hard, and I'm really quite moved by their commitment to Blunderbus.
It's off home now for a week or so, and then back on tour until the end of April 2007. It's a busy old life running a professional theatre company, but I love my job and I wouldn't change it. Thank you so much to the lovely people who have seen our show, and of course, a special thank you to our neighbour below for his charm and razor-sharp wit. Matthew, we love you, even though you can be an old grizzler! Here's to next year!

Last time I went to the Fringe was a decade ago as a mere teenage girl. This time I took a couple of friends with me and we enjoyed the festival to its max! Throughly enjoyed one-man Star Wars (I'm off to see it again in Leeds), Reg D Hunter is most definitely NOT Lenny Henry (which is just fab) and the Udderbelly was just plain brilliant - we always knew where we were if we saw that upside-down cow!
Well worth a visit and it was as fab and as random as I remember all that time ago! Bar the fact now I can drink too!
Lizzie, York, UK


Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Publicity takes lots of different forms. Photo: Giles Moss

One of the busiest weekends of the year now approaches, with lots of guests arriving for the television festival.
Venue 260 finishes tomorrow - our theatre comes down on Sunday. It's worked really well this year. Some of our summer staff are going home...(it's not over yet, guys!). They all hope to return next year. Thanks to everyone for working so hard.

At least the city will have a bank holiday this weekend to nurse its festival hangover. Final curtain-call is Saturday night, roll the credits, and roll on August 2007!


Paul Gudgin, director, Edinburgh Festival Fringe

We are now at the business end of the Fringe. Shortlists for the main awards have been announced, the TV execs and TV Festival roll into town this weekend and by now most reviews have been published.
Like an old prize fighter we now have to haul ourselves into the ring for once last decisive bout this weekend.

I've just come back from Edinburgh, my first trip to the fringe. I was completely won over by the vibrant city and the quality and range of entertainment we saw. One highlight was Simon Amstell's stand up at the Pleasance Dome, which was as sharp as I have seen, a very gifted comedian. Another highlight was the wonderful Just Another Sunday at the Holyrood tavern, a one-woman show and a hidden gem. We also saw an interesting Ron Mueck exhibition which is certainly worth a look. This will definitely not be my last trip to the Fringe!
Paul Hutt, London, England

Our flight to Edinburgh was cancelled on the 11 August, so we drove instead from Stansted so we could catch the Old Habits - Die Hard Durham Revue produced by our daughter. Proud parents - you bet! And the show was really funny, would have walked over hot coals to get there. Also took in Reg D Hunter at the Udderbelly, as well as the Ron Mueck exhibition. A fantastic 36 hours in Edinburgh. Thank you.
Sally Bradley, London

Have loved every minute of the Fringe this year. Used to visit from my native Aberdeenshire every year and crammed in as much as possible in the space of a week. Sort of lost enthusiasm when I came to live in Edinburgh and had to work through most of it... but this year has been so different. I have thrown myself into Fringe life wholeheartedly this year and have loved every minute of it.... great shows, good shows, so-so shows, bad shows and only one absolutely terrible show! But the absolutely jewel in the crown has been the free festival at various venues throughout the city. The addition of this new strand to the festival must make it the most inclusive festival in the world. The acts and venues charging top prices, take note please! The performers on the Free Fringe may be working for beer money, but they have been as good, and in many cases better, than some of the more expensive Fringe shows we have paid to see.
Catherine Sutherland, Edinburgh


Edinburgh Festival Fringe
The streets of Edinburgh are packed in the final week. Photo: Giles Moss

Wayne Garnett, technician

The lull after the weekend invasion from London gives us a bit of time to get out and about before those 16-hour working days arrive again next Saturday. When it gets to this stage of the festival thoughts turn to home, but perhaps this year I might stay on in Edinburgh for a while.

Charles Pamment, venue manager

It's the final week and, as ever, the month has flown by. Both our venues have had good years, including two award nominations from the Stage and the List. We'll find out if we've won this week.
I may have to retract some of my comments about comedy from last week's diary - I have to agree with Mick Quinn after seeing Tim Minchin's show over the weekend.

I've just waved goodbye to my wife and son at Edinburgh airport and am back to the daily grind of venue management... and the non-stop pouring rain that looks likely to remain for another three days. Our courtyard bar is taking in water, not that this is dampening the spirits of the drinkers who are taking in a lot more than that. The shows are still selling well with us though, that despite the fact that the Royal Mile has suddenly become deserted for all but the most intrepid of flyerers (and fringe-goers). The worst thing? I forgot to bring my waterproof coat this year. It's at times like this that I wish I ran my venue in Adelaide.
Julian Caddy, Director, Sweet Venues, London and Edinburgh

I have achieved a long-held dream to be part of the Fringe Festival. A wonderful and well organised city from the warm welcome, to the powerful architecture and even the buses. Standing on the Royal Mile with all that creative energy was just wonderful. So I'm a bit sad to have to return to rural Devon with my family leaving behind the brilliant cast who are presenting my play Blogging. Will I return? You bet!
Simon Patton, Blackborough, Devon

I'm a Glaswegian expat living in Edinburgh for the last 13 years. I've worked in bars for most of that time. As the manager of the City Caff says, it's months like this that remind you how satisfying the job can be. To the 'Bah Humbugs': yes, it takes longer to get across town; yes, there's more litter than usual; yes, there's lots of noise late at night; no, I don't want a flyer either. But any city in the world would give their Left Bank for the opportunity to host the world's largest arts festival and month-long party. Without the Festivals and Fringe Edinburgh would be little more than Auld Reekie. Long may it continue.
Jonny, Edinburgh


Lenny Hughes, hotelier, Jury's Inn

I've just welcomed our 200th arrival for today. Many of our guests are looking for Tattoo tickets. In a perfect world, Edinburgh would host the Tattoo for a longer period, perhaps twice per year? Many more could then take advantage of the one of the world's great spectacles.
Can't believe we are already in to week three and the start of the Film Festival. The streets are now peppered with even more famous faces. Off to see President UBU tonight - better make the most of things! You spend all year looking forward to August and then it just flies!

Having spent the last two festivals working at venues, this is the first time I have been a punter whilst trying to get on with normal work at the same time. Getting around the city is a nightmare, but when you get to see gems like Daniel Kitson's C-90 and Mark Watson's 36 hour show (well part of it anyway) you realise what an amazing thing the festival is.
Robin , Edinburgh

Glad to see Bill Davies' company is not engaging in comedy over this festival period as I think the sell-out houses would be harder to come by! As for his developing a hoverboard, perhaps if he and his troupe could take a break from trampling about, he would have more time to design it. And it is not just so he doesn't disturb me, but the three others who live with me. Some festival performers need to appreciate that Edinburgh doesn't turn into a holiday camp in August, and that some of us have real jobs all year round.
Matt Alder, Edinburgh

Have just returned from a busy fun packed two days at the festival - good as ever. I can recommend Finding Marina at the Botanical Gardens by Children of the Sea and Plan, and the Tattoo was a spectacular show. Roll on Festival 2007.
Miranda Foxton, Wakefield, England


Fringe performers, Royal Mile
Street entertainers are a major part of the Fringe

Ian Bowles, manager, City Cafe

After the initial shock at the increase traffic and business I remembered the good things about August. Although I haven't made it to a show yet (Bill Bailey will be my debut tonight), the atmosphere has been great and the chance to catch the Muerk exhibition was a real bonus. The punters are smiling and that rubs off on the staff, making work a joy again. Thank you Festival-goers; you remind me why I do my job.


Paul Gudgin, director, Edinburgh Festival Fringe

I have just been with the director of the Adelaide Fringe. Later this week we are hosting an event called 'Fringe Festivals around the World' a chance for some of the other Fringes (remarkably there are over 50) to tell us about their event. How good would it be to spend a year travelling to Fringes in Adelaide, Prague, Seoul, New York, Orlando... Maybe next year.

Just returned from the Fringe - great atmosphere and mostly great shows. There will always be some turkeys, but a few of the shows I saw that blew me away were Love Labours Won, Radio and Tim Minchin. I only wish I was back there!
Alex Nolan, London

I've been in Edinburgh for three days and have really enjoyed the Fringe. I heard about the festival a long time ago, but never thought it would be so fabulous. So many artists there and the military tattoo - it's amazing.
Ellen , London, UK

I was up in Edinburgh for a few days doing my MSc and popped along to see comedian Steve Williams. A Welsh geezer from Newport - he was quality. A great mix of crowd banter with a flow of stories, observations and hilarious impressions, voices and accents from around the world. Well worth a visit.
Rik Mellor, London, England


Daleks gather on Edinburgh's Royal Mile
Even Daleks can be spotted on Edinburgh's Royal Mile

Bill Davies, director, Blunderbus Theatre Company

The show is playing to sell-out houses and we have a really hard-working team pulling out all the stops to make this a festival to remember.
And yes, we have a really understanding neighbour who would like all of us to defy gravity and hover across floorboards, just so we don't disturb him. If we master it, I'll let you know.

Just returned from nine days in Edinburgh. I love this city and this is the third year we've been. So many good shows. Sarah Kendal, Mark Watson and Russell Howard are great one-man shows. If you're a Kitson fan DO NOT miss Honourable Gentlemen of Art at the Stand or his wonderfully articulate show C90 at the traverse theatre. I saw people crying. The set is amazing. I would also recommend Amadeus Returns at the Assembly Rooms. This is a comedy show about the musical genius but the instrument playing and the singing are beautiful too. There are a couple of shows that are NOT worth seeing but as ever it's the luck of the fringe when you go in the first week. Roll on next year! Edinburgh I miss you already.
David Barker, Ashby de la Zouch. England

It's crazy pandemonium, but would we really have it any other way. My other half and I decided to take the bicycles into town, the easiest way of seeing three shows in one afternoon! Derevo, as always were outstanding (and ever so slightly bonkers). The Japanese swordsmen/women at the Assembly Rooms on the Mound could only be explained to friends as kind of like a pantomime, with fighting! Surreal! The four comics at the Assembly Rooms gave us some giggles and some hysterical moments before we got back on the bikes and sped out of the crazy hustle bustle of town, to the safety of our home, where a large G&T was in order. No matter how busy Edinburgh is during the festival, it is still an amazing atmosphere and we should applaud everyone involved! (especially the refuse cleaners for their very difficult month of August)
Emil McMahon, Edinburgh

In contrast to Charles' comment about the comedy, I caught a few shows during the preview week when acts are still being worked on and thought the quality of what I saw was excellent: Rhod Gilbert, We Are Klang, Steven K Amos, Andy Parsons. Also caught comedian Phil Nichol in the play Talk Radio - a definite must-see. Wish I could have stayed the month!
Andy Skyrme, Cardiff

Festival Sunday on the Meadows was great. It was good to get a taster of the shows which are out there. There's so much on that acts need to do something to get people interested. Show-wise, Acoustic Edinburgh is great and so is Jarred Christmas' Geek Show - go and see it now if you want to have a laugh.
Anon, Jersey, Channel Islands

I was interested to read Charles Pamment's comment on the lack of quality on the comedy front. I was at the Dara O'Briain Radio 2 show last night at the Assembly Rooms and Mark Watson, Will Smith, Tim Minchin and Andrew Maxwell were all excellent. Comedy is alive and well!
Mike Quinn, Linlithgow, Scotland

Just returned home from a fantastic long weekend in Edinburgh. The Fringe was a tremendous experience: why have we not been before? Saw some great shows, and especially loved Twinkle Little Star at the Gilded Balloon. Tim Healey gave a brilliant solo performance in a well-scripted play. Incidentally are the Gilded Balloon keeping this show a secret? It was only by word-of-mouth we discovered it!
Barry Phillips, Accrington, England

The festival was OK, a little bit over-hyped though to be honest! Edinburgh is a beautiful city. The festival doesn't portray the city in its true light!
Jon North, Lancashire, Blackburn

I find it baffling that anyone who lives in Edinburgh would take issue with the festival. So what if the city is more congested than usual and every walk across town becomes a flyer-infested push 'n shove? The influx of performers and tourists can brighten up your lives if you actually bother to go to any shows - or are you too busy worrying about getting to work on time? I also fail to understand how it can be a waste of money (Harry Chapman), considering how many of Edinburgh's businesses benefit from the peripheral spend and exposure brought about by the festival.
Michael Rae, Edinburgh

We've just recently moved to Edinburgh and I have to say that the Fringe has definitely eased our homesickness. The atmosphere is so festive and great performers are everywhere. What else could anybody possibly want? Edinburgh is simply the best city - we are so lucky to be living here.
Nina Russell, Edinburgh


Charles Pamment, venue manager

Week two is upon us and the venue is very busy - but the city is notably quieter. Black Watch is the show of the fest, but many are moaning about the lack of quality this year, especially on the comedy front. Seems to be the same old performers in the same old venues.

Wayne Garnett, technician

Weekend was quieter than last year, probably due to the airports being closed.
I noticed on the blog a reference to visitors needing to clean up after themselves. Near where I'm based, under North Bridge, a huge pile of grey refuse sacks has been building up for nearly a week now. Twinned with masses of graffiti and the constant smell of stale urine, it makes an otherwise magical city a tad grubby. Come on council - sort it out!

Re: Harry Chapman's comments - 'No interest at all to the younger generation'? Assuming he's referring to the younger generation too old to find any appeal in the Children's Festival, surely he's not serious? If he's not interested in theatre and the dramatic arts, which is fair enough, what about the vast quantity of very good stand-up comedy that's on? Or the dozens of gigs and club nights during the festival that make late licensing in Edinburgh worthwhile? If none of this interests him and the younger generation (of which I am a part), what exactly would he want as part of the festival?
Craig, London

As a local myself, I wish all my fellow city inhabitants would stop spitting their dummies out when discussing the Festival. I'm the first to hold my hand up to say that the swarms of tourists bug me immensely when I'm trying to get from A to B, and that the packed buses and congested traffic and constant barrage of badly produced flyers in my face make me want to scream. However, these irritations are minor detractions from the overall atmosphere of the city at this time of year. Edinburgh is truly the best place to be in August.
Claire, Edinburgh

Living in Edinburgh I feel privileged to have this abundance of art and fun on my doorstep. People pay good money to travel and stay in Edinburgh, so everyone living in the city should count themselves lucky. Earning the minimum wage means I can only pay full price for a small number of shows but I would definitely see a lot more if the prices came down a bit.
Marie Lindstrom, Edinburgh, Scotland

I arrived in Edinburgh yesterday morning for my fifth year and was delighted to find that the first show I saw really summed up what the festival is about for me. Sing a Storm of Blackbirds was thought-provoking, funny and relevant to today's society. A fantastic start to my Edinburgh experience!
Oliver, Paris, France


Lenny Hughes, hotelier, Jury's Inn

What a busy week we've had. The hotel has now moved into '6th gear' - everyday starts with around 300 guests for breakfast, followed by lunch and dinner for 100. Everyone is working really hard, and still trying take in the odd show.
I finally watched my first show, Blunderbus's excellent Rainbow Fish. My kids loved me being dragged on stage by a fish called Bob, to dance and star as a horse. Thanks Bill, but can I have a stand-up part next time?

Sorry to break the trend of people saying the Edinburgh Festival is the best thing that happens to this city every year, I have to say it's the biggest waste of time and money possible. Where do we start? An influx of noisy and irritating tourists who cause untold delay to the city centre, a series of pointless shows which have no interest at all to the younger generation and an image of Edinburgh which makes it look ever so slightly snobbish. The best part of it all is the fireworks, 'cos at least that means it's all over.
Harry Chapman, Edinburgh

I just loved the experience. I went up there to see friends performing at one of the venues. Met some lovely people. The atmosphere on the Royal Mile was great. Well done Edinburgh for another fine festival.
Rick Hodges, London

Love the transformation of the city from green and peaceful to manic, hot and loud. I recommend the visitors mind the locals and clean up after themselves. Keep the noise down and walk on the left side - some of us live here and still have to get to work!
The greatest shame about the festival is that it has become one huge audition for TV by every performer.
Nicky Clarke, Edinburgh

A mate and I went up to the Edinburgh festival for a day from London. Neither of us had been before, but we were invited up by friends, and took advantage. Wow! I had no idea how big this event is! We saw Rick Skye impersonating Liza Minnelli in a venue so intimate that it could only hold 20 people at most. After a meal we saw the brilliant genius of Terry Alderton who made me laugh until I cried. My highlight? Finding TalkSport's Andy Jacobs sitting in the row in front of me enjoying Alderton as much as me!
John Porcella, London, UK

I was born and raised in Edinburgh. I have been a visitor to the festival and also played a military role with my snare drum on four occasions. I'm jealous of everyone who's going while I'm stuck down here in a job that doesn't let me have holiday when I want it!
Robert Kane, Guildford, England


Performers at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Performers promote their shows along Edinburgh's Royal Mile

Paul Gudgin, director, Edinburgh Festival Fringe

The Fringe is now pretty much in full flow. The streets are packed, there's a healthy queue at the box office and everyone is scouring the reviews and trying to find the latest 'hot' show.
Reviews are so vital in Edinburgh and it is great when they help turn unknown shows into instant success stories. The Five Star review is a very precious thing here.

To all those handing out flyers... If someone walking down the street is wearing a business suit, carrying a briefcase and looks hassled, then the chances are they are not going to want a flyer for a show at 2pm on a weekday afternoon - no matter how good you say it is!
Anon, Edinburgh

If you want to see excellent theatre then Meeting Joe Strummer at the Gilded Balloon is a must. Brilliant performances from Nick Miles and Steve North and a great soundtrack. It's witty, touching, poignant and will make you laugh. And if, like myself, you were a punk in the 70s, you will probably have a tear in your eye at the end. Seventy five minutes of sheer brilliance!
Angela Pritchard, Fraserburgh, Scotland

I was there in 1979. We took the 31 bus in from the suburbs. I can still recall the vivid, almost lurid, sights and sounds - the colours, the downpours! It was all so wonderful. Has it all been put under a big tent now?
Kristoper Parkin, Silver Spring, Maryland, USA


Deborah Hutt, at the Edinburgh Fringe
Deborah dons her pink Stetson and goes in search of an audience

Deborah Hutt, National Saxophone Choir

The Fringe is amazing. I'm throwing away all my British repression and accosting people on the street with show fliers whilst wearing a pink Stetson - very liberating. It's the only place on the planet where you can see a Dalek, Pakistani bagpipers and a woman with a meat cleaver in her head within 50 yards of each other. 'Nuff said.

As Mr Bill Davies (8th August) is living above us, and is the cause of no end of sleepless nights due to noise, we thought he should know that we are more concerned about this marathon month than he is!
Matthew, Edinburgh

Only went for the weekend (student funds limited the length of time), but still managed to cram a lot in. Saw Harry Shearer and wife (highly NOT recommended), Andy Parsons, Frankie Boyle and the E4 Moovers and Shakers on Sunday night (all recommended). But my personal favourite was Robin Ince - very funny man. If you're a big fan of Ricky Gervais, you'll have heard of this man and you will enjoy this show a lot.
Overall, Edinburgh is a great city all year round but especially during the festival. Everything is buzzing, especially the bars! I've been twice to the festival now and will definitely be going back for more!
George Peters, Cheshunt, Herts, UK


Bill Davies, Blunderbus Theatre Company
Children's show The Rainbow Fish runs throughout the Fringe

Bill Davies, director, Blunderbus Theatre Company

It's Tuesday, it's overcast, two days gone, 24 to go. It feels like I've already been here a month. The show is selling well though and the reviews have been kind. I just hope the cast will survive this marathon month.

Wayne Garnett, sound technician

So here we are, bedding down into week one. I much prefer building the theatre, my work hits a bit of lull now. Perhaps it's time to get out there and see what's going on - if only I wasn't required to be on site for 16 hours a day!

Charles Pamment, venue manager

Here we go again: 12 shows in 16 hours, coffee, Red Bull, coffee, beer. Children, students, The Livewire Players, comedy and a late night Macbeth make for a long and testing day.

I think the festival is the best thing to happen to Edinburgh since someone had the bright idea of building a castle as a tourist attraction for the Americans. My boyfriend however grumps about all the people that visit, even though they contribute substantially to the city's economy and without their annual support the council wouldn't be able to create so many valued jobs in the parking sector...
Lyndsay, Edinburgh

I worked in the festival for six years and loved every crazy second of it. There's an incredible ethos and atmosphere where people are prepared to lose hundreds of pounds just to entertain an audience, which they're lucky to get. It never fails to amaze me how my fellow residents can complain about hosting it. Stop moaning! It's only three weeks after all! Take a holiday in August!
Ian, Edinburgh, Scotland

Not far from me either - always wanted to go, just never gotten around to it.....yet!!!
Carole Young, Glasgow, Scotland


Paul Gudgin, director, Edinburgh Festival Fringe
Mr Gudgin has been at the Fringe Office since 1999

Paul Gudgin, director, Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Just now Edinburgh feels a bit like the famous scene from Zulu when the troops realise the scale of the attack they are about to face.

Tons of equipment are pouring into venues, performers are arriving in droves, posters are going up everywhere and I got my first handful of flyers as I walked up the High Street yesterday. Let's get this festival started!

Lenny Hughes, hotelier, Jury's Inn

This is now our fourth year as a Fringe venue and the finishing touches are being put to our temporary theatre on the eighth floor. Until the end of August this will become Venue 260.

Some of our staff have never worked here during the festival, but have heard so much about Edinburgh in August. The sense of anticipation, in the hotel and on the streets, is magnificent.

The eyes of the world are on Edinburgh.

The procession at Edinburgh
Edinburgh Fringe is the world's largest arts festival

Deborah Hutt, chair, National Saxophonist Choir

Performing at the Fringe is like being pregnant: nine months of nervous anticipation, vague nausea and knowing the real pain is yet to come - not forgetting the potential bankruptcy.

Saying that, playing with 30 saxophonists is an amazing experience, and I can't wait to get out there and have some fun!

Ian Bowles, manager, City Cafe

After 11 months of looming the Festival is here. Again. The cobbles have been polished and re-placed, the Asbos served and the thespians are trickling in.

A refusal to take flyers is a personal affront, as is a request to order from the menu (yes, it's a menu - not a list of ingredients!). Welcome to Edinburgh...

Fantastic colour and sounds throughout the city on Sunday, definitely going back for more!
Gordon, Dunfermline, Scotland

I love the Edinburgh festival - the sights, sounds and colours on the streets are almost as good as the shows themselves. Has anyone else seen the pink gorilla?
Georgie, London, UK

I have worked during the Edinburgh Festival for several years running, but there is nothing outstanding about it - it causes more traffic, more litter and additional safety concerns. It is also very difficult to get tickets to events, and finding parking is unbearable. During the Festival, Edinburgh centre should be a vehicle-free zone, except for taxis and buses.
Ben Walker, Edinburgh

And I thought Texans were crazy!
George, USA

Much as I wish to celebrate the £125m or whatever we make in this month as a city, I wish the visitors brought more than their backpacks and wallets. I wish they brought their civic sense with them. This beautiful city is littered with all manner of paper cups, fries pockets and bottles. During the parade, the litter piles on Princes Street were huge.
And please stop shouting after 11pm. Some of us have jobs to do next day, we are not all on a cheap holiday.
Anonymous, Edinburgh

From the expansive Spiegeltent right in the middle of my university campus to the sound of bagpipes in procession just outside my window, it certainly is the best time of the year to be a student here in Edinburgh! If only I had finished my Masters dissertation in time...
Sai Pradhan, Edinburgh, UK

I've enjoyed the Edinburgh festival for the past few years, but this year I've decided to get involved. Being a performance artist in my native Bahrain, my latest work is being interpreted in the streets, cafés, and bookstores of Edinburgh on a spontaneous basis. Edinburgh is a unique city in this respect. In most other places I am just stared at as a madman, but here my work is admired and lauded!
Omar Al Shehabi, Oxford, UK

I hope Sean Connery will be there, with his kilt!
Hercy Nieva, Sacramento, California, USA

Performing at the Fringe for the first time is going to be such an awesome experience. We are so excited and can't wait to get up there to be a part of the fun and, of course, the hard work that lies ahead.
Karen Harrup, Leicester

My son Nicolas, who turned 17 a few days ago, will soon leave along with 26 others for Scotland where they will be performing. They are so excited to be part of this experience. We moms and dads will be logging in to keep up with news from afar.
Ljubinka Jandrich, Champaign, Illinois, USA

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