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live artist, poet, and general doer of things

“Edinburgh is Sleepwalking into a Cultural Disaster” at Bright Green

I’ve got quite a vitriolic post up at politics blog Bright Green today about Edinburgh’s independent venue closures. It’s a rant that’s been brewing for a while about our total lack of cultural leadership. Enjoy!

The litany has become terribly familiar: La Belle Angele, the Big Red Door, the Lot, the Roxy Arthouse, the Forest Café, and now Cabaret Voltaire and the Bongo Club. In the last decade, Edinburgh’s independent arts venues have been closed or threatened with closure, one by one. Each new loss has occurred for ostensibly different reasons – the Cowgate fire, the sequestration of the Edinburgh University Settlement, buy-out, lease termination – but the differences between the closures risk masking the importance of the trend. What’s happening doesn’t just present a tremendous risk to Edinburgh’s local arts culture, it also indicates a shameful lack of cultural leadership – the refusal of the property sector, local government or creative support organisations to step into the breach. This failure risks undermining everything that makes Edinburgh’s cultural sector so special and so valuable to the city.

1 Comment»

  ayrgael wrote @

Maybe…just maybe, much as I love all the above, it is time to give them the finger! Deny Edinburgh the right to cultural events – pull out, move to Perth or Leeds or Belfast and leave Edinburgh without festival kudos (They couldn’t give the punters what they want without you guys) Time to take it where it is appreciated andd leave the shitty council up a festival-less creek xx


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