POSTED ON 05/09/2019

Offering an unparalleled mix of cultural experiences, the Edinburgh International and Fringe festivals take place in August and collectively form the World’s largest arts festival. With thousands of performers taking to hundreds of stages across the city, this year proved to be the busiest ever; none more so than for us here at Hawthorn, who supplied equipment to performances across both festivals.

Having headed to Edinburgh for our 29th festival season, this year saw us provide lighting, rigging and power distribution to the Edinburgh International Festival (EIF).

The International Festival presents a programme featuring the finest performers and ensembles from the worlds of dance, opera, music and theatre. We were tasked with providing equipment to a huge array of performances in Festival Theatre, Kings Theatre, Lyceum Theatre, The Studio and Usher Hall as well as providing kit to the highly-anticipated opening ceremony which took place at Tynecastle Park.

EIF Opening Ceremony - Image: Ian Georgeson

As well as supplying equipment to EIF, we were also kept busy with our fabulous Edinburgh Festival Fringe clients. This included supplying lighting, rigging and power distribution for Assembly Festival - the longest-running of the multi-venue operators – as well as continuing our collaboration with Summerhall and long-term client Paradise Green.

With decades of experience working with large and small venues alike, our Hire team was well placed to provide the technical support for the vast array of performances that relied on their equipment. With technical kit running nearly 24 hours a day over the course of the 25-day long festival, reliability is key. Having a strict maintenance policy, where every item is tested and checked after every hire, we have a glowing reputation for reliable equipment, one of the many reasons venues chose to work with us again and again.

Image: David Monteith

David Slater, Hawthorn’s Group Director of Hire, said, “This year has definitely been our busiest Fringe Festival to date and we’re thrilled to be working with so many amazing venues, both new and old. Edinburgh International Festival was a new client for us this year and it was a privilege to support them in so many fantastic new venues. EIF offers such a diverse progamme so it was really exciting to see our equipment supporting the performances.

“We have great relationships with the teams at Assembly Festival, Paradise Green and Summerhall so it was amazing to get our kit back into their venues for another action-packed August. After nearly three decades working on the iconic festival, it’s still a huge buzz for us to be asked to supply the equipment and service these key venues need to put on their unique range of performances.” 

Header image - Chris Scott