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Edinburgh Festival Fringe unveils schemes to help young theatre critics and writers

Festivalgoers throng the Royal Mile at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Photo: Lou Armor/Shutterstock Festivalgoers throng the Royal Mile at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Photo: Lou Armor/Shutterstock
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Two initiatives have been launched for this year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe aimed at helping young theatre writers break into arts journalism.

The Fringe Young Writers’ Award is open to writers aged 16 to 21, and will go to the writer of the best review of an Edinburgh Fringe show this year. They will receive mentoring from arts writers at The Scotsman and paid to work as part of the paper’s reviewing team at the 2019 Fringe.

Roger Cox, arts editor of The Scotsman, said: “We recognise the vital importance of developing new talent and encouraging young writers. We’re delighted to support the Fringe Young Writers’ Award, which offers a fantastic opportunity for the next generation of arts writers to put their skills to the test.”

Applications for the award will be accepted until August 18, with the winner announced on August 25.

Meanwhile, the Young Critics’ Programme will give 10 of the best young Scottish reviewers mentoring and workshops from Youth Theatre Arts Scotland, before they review shows at this year’s festival and receive feedback from arts professionals to hone their critical skills.

Applications to join the programme open on May 7 and close on May 24.

The initiatives, overseen by the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, are part of Scotland’s Year of Young People, which aims to spotlight the views and concerns of the younger generation during 2018.

Fringe Society chief executive Shona McCarthy said: “The Fringe Society works to support everyone who participates in the fringe, and we’re acutely aware of how important quality arts journalism is to the success of the festival.”

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