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Made in Scotland Fringe programme announced

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A play about the London riots of 2011 and a piece of dance theatre initially created for the 2012 Cultural Olympiad are among more than a dozen productions to feature in the Scottish Government-funded Made in Scotland programme for this year’s Edinburgh Fringe.

The £400,000 fund, towards additional presenting costs of bringing existing or new work to the fringe, is now in its fifth year. It has been expanded, with increased finance, to include 20 music events beside the theatre and dance productions.

Describing this year’s programme as a step-change, Scottish culture secretary Fiona Hyslop told The Stage: “It is the first year we have had music, but also in terms of the quality of the applications. It is being seen as a really strong brand by the performers.

“There are people here with experience who can contribute more to those who are here for the first time. So you are starting to get an evolution of the network of MIS performers. It is not just the performances but the added value of the networking, the support and advice they get from being a part of this programme.”

The 13 theatre and dance productions include Chalk Farm in which Keiran Hurley and AJ Taudevin, the creators of the award-winning Beats, examine the human element behind London’s riots of 2011. Claire Cunningham, who appeared in the first MIS programme, is bringing Menage a Trois, a piece about her relationship with her crutches created with the National Theatre of Scotland for the Cultural Olympiad. Cora Bissett and David Greig’s multi-media co-production What Ever Gets You Through The Night is also included.

Newcomers to the award include Adura Onashile with HeLa, about Henrietta Lacks and the cell sample taken from her which revolutionised 20th century medicine. Robert Softley brings his solo show If These Spasms Could Speak, based on true stories about disabled people and their bodies.

Laura Mackenzie Stuart, acting director of creative development at Creative Scotland which administrates the fund, told The Stage that there had been about 60 applications across the theatre and dance programmes. Although this is a slight increase on previous years the significance was in the quality of applications.

She said: “There was a clear understanding of both the opportunity and the context of MiS. That was well articulated in the applications, which is encouraging because it makes you feel that all applicants would be able to make full use of the MIS showcase opportunity.”

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