Hidden Door Festival – Edinburgh Event

We’re very excited about the The Hidden Door Festival which runs from 28th March – 5th April, for full details please visit here.

The Hidden Door Festival has created a one-off opportunity to use the site of the controversial Caltongate Development Project, just off the Royal Mile in Edinburgh, to showcase some of the best breakthrough arts talent in Scotland before it is finally handed over to the developers.

This pop-up event will last for nine days only, unlocking 24 forgotten vaults along Market Street and filling them with art installations, live music venues, bars, a theatre and a cinema, all spilling out onto the pavement, transforming the quiet street beside Waverley train station into a vibrant festival site.

The idea of the festival came to creative director David Marin when he felt there were not enough opportunities for creative practitioners across disciplines to get together and show what they were doing in Edinburgh.

“This is the city of festivals, but there is a huge amount of talent right here on our doorstep that doesn’t get a look-in. I wanted to create a festival made by Edinburgh, for Edinburgh, and invite talented individuals and acts from all over to come and join in with what we are doing.”

The event is packing a huge amount of exhibitions, collaborations and performances into the unique site, with visual artists, live music acts, film makers and poets all given space or featured in the programme.

The festival is set up to bring about collaborative projects, or to enable contributors to try new things, such as exciting emerging artist Bronwen Sleigh, noted for her printmaking, who will set up an installation in an entire vault, or artist David Cass who will create a large-scale outdoor painting on the large wooden doors of the vaults. The live music programme features everything from a night of ‘alternative orchestras’ to hotly-tipped new Edinburgh-based talent such as singer LAW, to showcase evenings of Scottish record labels, such as Lost Map Records. The cinema programme will feature evenings programmed by the likes of the renowned Alchemy Film Festival, and an animation showcase hosted by Edinburgh College of Art. The poetry programme will feature a wide range of collaborations, from Steven Fowler bringing up some ‘Enemies’ from London to walk us round the site, to a Caesura evening- Graeme Smith’s acclaimed dynamic poetry event.

The festival will be free during the day to explore, but each evening there will be a different party, with live music, film, theatre and performances, which will each require a ticket for entry.

Hidden Door is unusual for an arts festival in that it doesn’t depend on funding, but raises its own revenue to pay for itself. It is a volunteer-run organisation and as David Martin says “everyone who is involved is putting in their own resources because they want to see this happen- they know Edinburgh needs something like this. There is so much energy and excitement around this project – it’s quite unlike anything Edinburgh’s seen before, and we have this amazing site right in the heart of the city – so we can’t wait to show everyone what we can do with it when we get together!”


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