Assembly Launches Programme

Posted by to The Blog on May 17th

The Assembly Rooms Fringe programme was officially launched yesterday, unveiling an expanded programme of music, comedy and theatre, AR Fringe Director Tommy Sheppard said that this year the city centre would become the undisputed heart of the festival.

“In recent years the fringe has drifted away from the centre of town to peripheral venues on the south side of the city”, said Sheppard. “Last year the re-opened Assembly Rooms saw the world’s largest arts festival come back to the city centre. Now with a number of new venues joining us on the street we intend to move up a gear and make George Street the must visit fringe destination. Last year nearly 200,000 people visited the Assembly Rooms and the Famous Spiegel terrace – this year we aim to make it a quarter of a million.

“All of this is good for local business,” claimed Sheppard, as he unveiled the plans for a revamped outdoor terrace on the city’s most famous retail boulevard. “We’ve spent 3 months consulting with local businesses, and we’ve made changes to the plans for the Spiegel terrace which I’m sure nearly everyone will approve of. There’ll be many more daytime gates in the perimeter allowing shoppers to move around, and we’ve teamed up with neighbouring licensed retail businesses that will help deliver the event.

“We will now be working with individual businesses to draw-up bespoke marketing campaigns that will help each take advantage of the increased footfall on George Street. As well as general customer promotions, look out for on-site makeovers from top cosmetics retailers and outdoor fashion shows on the Aperol Spritz Presents Stage from major fashion stores.”

David Bates, The Spiegel maestro added:

“The Famous Spiegeltent is once more delighted to return to its festival birthplace and build upon its iconic Edinburgh reputation as one of the most loved Edinburgh venues.  We were so inspired last year by the heartfelt support this city has for us. Edinburgh has a real understanding of the original and the best and we are excited to build upon last year’s great return in the inspired location on George Street.  It is the most civilized and dynamic hub in the greatest festival in the world.”

The AR Fringe is flying the flag for Scotland again this year with a show from our very own Makar Liz Lochhead, who also has a show named after her…certainly a Fringe first. No stranger to controversy, the programme line-up includes George Galloway and Jerry Sadowitz as well as two performances sure to raise a few eye-brows, Scott Capurro’s Islamohomophobia and Killers, a play about the most horrific British serial killers of our generation.

For all Assembly Room listings and tickets visit:


One response to “Assembly Launches Programme”

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