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Hot tips for the Edinburgh Festival

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The second you step off a train to Edinburgh in August, you find yourself amidst the hustle and bustle of a city alive with excitement.

From amazing acrobatics to thrilling theatre, the Edinburgh International and Fringe Festivals are a yearly display of some of the world’s finest performances. But with so many excellent shows to choose between, it’s not always easy to know what to book.

Read on for some of our favourite hotly tipped shows…

Kieran Hurley – Beats

Get wrapped up in a magnificent piece of storytelling by booking tickets to see Kieran Hurley’s Beats. This is a coming-of-age story told in monologue that is underpinned by some cafefully chosen techno beats. It’s written and performed by Kieran Hurley with Arches resident DJ Johnny Whoo and centres round the rave scene in 1994, hit by the Criminal Justice Act that effectively outlawed raves. Feel the contrasting forces of rebellion and apathy that followed the news and immerse yourself in just a few of those beats.

The Traverse Theatre, 14 – 26 August

Camille O’Sullivan – The Rape of Lucrece

Camille has been a regular fixture of the Edinburgh Fringe for eight years now, tantalising audiences with her wonderful singing voice and cabaret style. This year, she’s not only taking to the stage in her usual role as songstress, but is also making her International Festival debut in The Rape of Lucrece – an adaptation of Shakespeare’s tragic poem created with the help of director Elizabeth Freestone and Camille’s musical collaborator Fergal Murray.

The Rape of Lucrece
Royal Lyceum Theatre, 22 – 26 August

Tony Law – Maximum Nonsense

Expect full on fun at Tony Law’s comedy show this year. A stream of nonsense that is nonetheless so well crafted you’re sure to find yourself in hysterics. Award winning and highly acclaimed, this stand up show is the antidote to comedy shows with a serious agenda. Go for a spirit lifting experience on a small stage.

Maximum Nonsense
The Stand Comedy Club, 3 – 27 August

Daniel Bye – The Price of Everything

Cutting satire wrapped up in a mesmerising story, The Price of Everything is an exploration of worth. Daniel Bye keeps the tone comedic and you’ll find yourself chortling along, even though the subject matter is at times less than funny. Be prepared for some crazy facts, an engaging stand-up style, and the occasional slip into informative public lecture – well worth the price of a ticket.

The Price of Everything
Northern Stage at St Stephen’s, 3 – 25 August

Ballet Preljocaj

If you think ballet is all tutus and pointe shoes, this is the company to change your mind. Dark, intense and exploring the extremes of human rituals, beliefs and relationships, it’s a festival show that’s destined to leave you feeling raw and revitalised. Created by renowned French choreographer Angelin Preljocaj, it’s one of our top picks for its high-tension climaxes and dreamy, serene set pieces.

Not sure if it’s for you? Watch the video for a taste of this unusual ballet.

Ballet Preljocaj
The Edinburgh Playhouse, 9 August – 2 September

Horrible Histories – Barmy Britain

Loved by children and big kids everywhere, Horrible Histories has been a hugely successful series of books, a popular TV show and now it’s set to storm the stage at the Edinburgh Festival too. In Barmy Britain it pokes fun at some of the strange and awful things that pattern the history of the UK, providing plenty of laughs as well as an introduction to the country’s history – with all of the nasty bits left in.

Horrible Histories
Pleasance Courtyard, 4 – 26 August

Whenever festival time rolls around, be sure to book your tickets in advance to save cash to spend on festival shows. If you’re coming from far away, our journey planner is another excellent way to save.

Do you know of any excellent shows or venues we’re missing out on? Tweet or Facebook us and share your top festival tips…

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