Inside Culture #19 (Edinburgh Festival Special)

This week, Inside Culture comes to from Edinburgh as it hosts The International Edinburgh Festival and the Fringe Festival. There are over 3000 shows being performed in the Scottish capital across a number of festivals.

One of these is Mule. it’s directed by Kat Woods and it is based on the true story of ‘the Peru two’ – Michaela McCollum and Melissa Reid who were convicted of drug smuggling in 2013. The play explores how a seemingly innocent adventure of a summer spent in the party capital of the world spiral out of control and end locked up in a notorious Peruvian prison. Inspired by the real events of the Peru Two, Mule explores the murky, hedonistic world of drug smuggling and its apparent female-isation. Written and directed by the multi award-winning writer of five-star Edinburgh Festival Fringe sell-out shows Belfast Boy and Wasted. Mule is a must-see! By award-winning writer and director Kat Woods with Actors Edith Poor and Aoife Lennon.

We speak to Kieran Hodgson a performer who is destined to be part of the cultural landscape for years to come. Following on from last year’s excellent Lance, Kieran Hodgson is back in Edinburgh with his one-man, multiple character show, Maestro – detailing an awkward youth’s fumbling experiences with love and his own passion for the music of composer Gustav Mahler.

Edinburgh, at this time of the year, is a magnet for comedians both established and emerging. It’s a fraught time as performers compete to attract audiences and as they face and often critical crowd. Irish comedians Andrew Maxwell and Gráinne Maguire are both performing in Edinburgh this year and talk to us about the pressure of doing the month-long run. Both of them are living in the UK which provides both opportunities and challenges for their material.

Given the nature of the times, it’s no surprise that many performances are finding ways to explore themes of migration, racism and identity. Regan Hutchins speaks to musician Martin Green whose show FLIT works with other musicians and animators to weave together the experiences of migrants from all over the world and across the centuries. Joe Selman Leava’s show Labels looks at the dangers of applying words to groups of people – what crimes have ‘illegal immigrants’ committed, for example? The show is based on his own family background as his Ugandan father travelled to England in the 1960’s. Café Palestine is a performance pack with song and dance which has brought a group of Palestinian teenagers to Edinburgh to tell the story of their lives in refugee camps in Palestine.

Broadcast on 29 August 2016