Back to the Stage

All eyes on deck!

At one fell swoop, here are my images from the recent and brilliant theatre productions I have had the pleasure of working on over the last month. All Scottish and all highly contemporary in their own ways.

First up, Ka-boing, is Random Accomplice’s The Incredible Adventures of See Thru Sam, which just finished its tour in Edinburgh’s Traverse a week back. Take a gander at their excellent website and admire Johnny McKnight’s comic book flair!

 And for my inner teenager, at my inner back of the bus:

I was invited to Perth to shoot Horsecross Theatre’s production of The Odd Couple last month. A rewritten female version of the classic 60’s play and film. Sensation overload: with a really sumptuously 80’s set, wardrobe and palette that I literally didn’t know where to look! On top of everything the downtown NY accents and antics had me rightly tickled.

Finally this month I had the pleasure of working for the first time with my fabulous Leith neighbours Grid Iron on their proudction of The Authorised Kate Bane, which finished its run at the Trav last week. It was a really atmospheric and wintery production and has done more to get me excited for the cold months ahead than all the tinsel and jingles that characterise the start of the season. It was great to work around such an intimate set and I was more than encouraged to get “in amongst it” which, as you know by now, there is nowhere else I would rather be.


Har Harr

There is a lot to be said for the cold and the rain to bring out a darker side of the imagination. Mid May, and I was expecting a slow incline of daylight and a steady blooming of heat. We should all know better. Five degrees and a lead sky. The Arctic howl of December through our clothes, a flowing mire beneath our jaded shoes.  The worst shock to the system is the disappointment, that we have to wait in suspense for our summer to ever arrive.

The upshot is that I started touring my archive of the images I took over Winter for some consolation on how bad it can get. We need no reminding of the dark once the sun is baking our pavements again so I am happy to post them here for now. Tragically enough, these images of a very sombre Edinburgh Haar are only about a month old. Scotland, as ever, defies the definition of Winter.

Down in Leith it is business as usual. A busy football Saturday, pubs rammed. The opposing ends of Hibernian Stadium invisible to each other through a thick wall of white, according to reports. Shops’ shutters up, dogs to be walked, traffic lights green, football practice at 10, paper supplements, bus stop queue, Kirkgate pigeons, shopping bags at the bar, traffic lights red. And all the while, a heavy silence. Like holding the world on mute as the white envelopes everything. I walk around and see some of the most banal things blown out of proportion. A woman and her dog, burnished like two spots of ink on canvas. A flock of seagulls, noiseless from nowhere, bluster limply overhead like debris in a gale. A father and daughter emerge kicking a football in the Links. Shrouded in a cavern of grey, their breath on the air like coal trains as they run directionless, only to be swallowed again into nothing.

And a solitary figure, who seems more at home in the blankness than anyone. Hi Rab:-p