10 unmissable events happening in Edinburgh and Glasgow this May
- The List
- 1 May 2019
Including Hidden Door, SMHAF, Riverside and Mayfesto
It may have downsized slightly this year, but that doesn't make Hidden Door any less of a crucial component of the Scottish cultural landscape. Back once again at the reinvigorated Leith Theatre, this long weekender plays host to the likes of Ray BLK, East Lothian hip-hoppers The Honey Farm, Glasgow DJ Sarra Wild, and the brilliantly named pop experimenters Let's Eat Grandma.
Leith Theatre, Edinburgh, Thu 30 May–Sun 2 Jun.
Another 50th anniversary bash this year has Scottish Ballet tearing up floors in celebration, kicking off with Spring!, featuring choreography from Sir Kenneth MacMillan and Sophie Laplane.
Theatre Royal, Glasgow, Thu 4–Sat 6 Apr; Edinburgh Festival Theatre, Thu 2–Sat 4 May.
Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival
Keeping the issue of mental health firmly on the public agenda, SMHAF puts together another important event with the theme Connected driving the programme.
Various venues, nationwide, Fri 3–Sun 26 May.
Edinburgh International Children's Festival
Another innovative and exciting line-up of children's theatre is assembled by Noel Jordan with France, Australia and the United Kingdom among the nations represented.
Various venues, Edinburgh, Sat 25 May–Sun 2 Jun.
Take Me Somewhere
Returning for a third year, the drama festival which invokes the spirit of Glasgow's Arches demonstrates flexibility and inclusivity with Mette Ingvartsen, Simone Kenyon, V/DA and Ivo Dimchev all on the bill.
Various venues, nationwide, Sat 11 May–Sun 2 Jun.
A top-notch bank holiday weekend is lit up with Scotland's biggest electronic music festival welcoming Jon Hopkins, Rebekah, Daniel Avery, Carista and many more to the bonny banks of the Clyde.
Riverside Museum, Glasgow, Sat 25 & Sun 26 May.
Werq The World
High flyers from RuPaul's Drag Race sashay into town for Werq the World with their usual overflowing levels of glamour as they attempt to save the universe, both metaphorically and in plot terms.
Edinburgh Playhouse, Mon 6 May; SEC, Glasgow, Fri 17 May.
With Larks in Transit, the hirsute musical comic explores the notion of happiness and mashes up some unlikely sonic pairings to stupendous effect.
Caird Hall, Dundee, Wed 29 May; SSE Hydro, Glasgow, Thu 30 May; Edinburgh Playhouse, Fri 31 May.
The art of performance gets an uplift for an entire calendar month with the latest instalment of Mayfesto bringing us the likes of Johnny McKnight reimagining a Dario Fo classic and Apphia Campbell revisiting Woke.
Tron Theatre, Glasgow, Wed 1–Fri 31 May.
(Chosen by comedian Phill Jupitus)
There are moments when an artist or performer hits a rare vein of form. The timing of these purple patches is, sadly, completely unpredictable. James Yorkston seems to be in just such a place with the release of his new long player The Route to the Harmonium. Unlike previous albums, it was crafted over a much longer period, sandwiched between his other duties as an author, club promoter, band member and dad. It is an extraordinary work, imbued with an enticing sonic palate, heart-twanging lyrics and melodies that ebb and flow like the chill waters of Cellardyke Harbour. The single 'My Mouth Ain't No Bible' is a worthy challenger to the 'speak song' crown of Tom Waits. As a live performer, his bone-dry wit and laid-back demeanour make him supremely watchable. Like a kind of hipster Chic Murray.
Phill Jupitus: Sassy Knack, Tolbooth, Stirling, Sat 25 May; Dundee Rep, Fri 31 May; James Yorkston, Summerhall, Edinburgh, Thu 2 May; Òran Mór, Glasgow, Fri 3 May.