Summer school strengthens Festival support

The University continues its support of the Edinburgh International Festival (EIF) by co-curating a day of events and the creation of a new summer school for ambitious arts producers, programmers and performers.

The University will contribute a range of attractions to the three-week celebration of the arts, many of which examine the relationship between culture and conflict a century after the outbreak of the First World War.

As part of the University’s support it is sponsoring both the closing concert and a performance in the opening weekend featuring a renowned musical alumnus.

The University of Edinburgh is the Festival’s official University Partner.

University Day and International Festival Encounters

Events co-curated by the University include:

  • The annual University Day (28 August) features academics sharing compelling ideas from their research and scholarship. Professor Christine Bell looks at the rise of negotiated settlements as a way of ending wars, while the University’s Centre for Cultural Relations stages a discussion on the complex relationship between conflict and culture.
  • Drawing on the Festival as an inspirational learning environment, August will mark the debut of International Festival Encounters. A five-day summer school for producers, programmers and performers, the sheme is a partnership between the University, the Festival and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. It gives participants an immersive festival experience and access to key figures in the arts (22-26 August).
I’m delighted our partnership with Edinburgh International Festival continues to flourish. We are particularly excited about the first year of the International Festival Encounters summer school. We look forward to bringing together world-leading festival practitioners with the arts entrepreneurs of the future.
Professor Dorothy MiellVice Principal and Head of the College of Humanities and Social Science

Human zoos and The Planets

Events sponsored and supported by the University include:

  • The finale of the EIF concert series, a performance of Sandakan Threnody, festival director Sir Jonathan Mills’ oratorio honouring the 2500 British and Australian prisoners of war who lost their lives in the death marches in North Borneo during the Second World War, and Janaeck’s Glagolitic Mass (30 August).
  • Alumnus Donald Runnicles conducts the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in a performance of Holst’s The Planets (9 August).
  • The University’s Playfair Library will also host Exhibit B, the recreation of the ‘human zoos’ that proved popular in Europe during the scramble for African resources in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Part performance, part exhibition, the installation featuring black performers looks at racism and Europe’s colonial history in Africa (9-25 August).

Conflict and Culture

Elsewhere in the festival, the University’s Donald Bloxham, Professor of European History, will chair a talk reassessing the commemoration of the First World War (9 August), and Randall Stevenson, Professor of 20th Century Literature, leads a discussion on the cultural impact of war and its influence on poetry, theatre and fiction from the 19th Century (11 August).

The breadth and depth of partnership between the University of Edinburgh and the Edinburgh International Festival continues to grow as a result of a natural synergy created when bringing our artists and academic thinkers together. I am delighted that this year we add the Encounters summer school and look forward to engaging through it with artistic entrepreneurs of the future.
Jonathan MillsFestival Director and Chief Executive

Related Links

Edinburgh International Festival

The College of Humanities and Social Science

Ticket discounts for staff