Bookbug: songs and rhymes for young children and babies. 10.30-11am, Oxgangs Library, 343 Oxgangs Road North.
Live Music Now: Slide Too Far. Formed two years ago in Glasgow, trombone quartet Slide Too Far has gone from strength to strength, winning prizes and performing throughout the UK and Europe. Described as theatrical, virtuosic and with beautiful lyricism, their repertoire links the visual art of Venice with opera overtures and Italian arias, as well as music dating from the time of Titian (using period instruments). From Scotland, there are Dougie Maclean, Phil Cunningham and traditional Scots songs to celebrate St Andrew’s Day. 6-6.30pm, National Gallery of Scotland, The Mound. Free and unticketed.
Gaelic Bookbug: songs and rhymes for young children and babies. 10.30am, Blackhall Library, 56 Hillhouse Road
Blackwell’s Edinburgh Presents Elizabeth Laird: The Lure of the Honey Bird. In 1967, at the age of 23, Elizabeth Laird set off for Addis Ababa to take up her first teaching post. She was introduced to Haile Sellasie, made a pilgrimage across the mountains on foot to the ancient city of Lalibela, hitched a ride on an oil tanker across the Danakil Desert and was arrested for a murder she had not committed. Back in Britain Laird established herself as a major author of fiction for children and young adults, but she always wanted to return to Ethiopia and her chance came in the late 1990s when the British Council in Addis Ababa invited her to collect folk stories from every region of the country. Encountering ex-guerilla fighters, camel traders, Coptic nuns and tribal people en route, Laird has written a remarkable account of her journey, interwoven with a treasure trove of stories featuring princes and maidens, snakes and lions, zombies and hyena-women. 6.30-7.30pm, Blackwell’s, South Bridge. Free tickets can be obtained from Blackwell’s front desk, by calling 0131 622 8218 or emailing email@example.com. Part of Previously….Scotland’s History Festival.
Bookbug: songs and rhymes for young children and babies. 11am, Granton Library, Wardieburn Terrace.
Bridgend Growing Communities Gardening Workshop: help transform the garden into a friendly and relaxing space for the whole community. No experience necessary, all tools and materials provided. 12 noon-2pm today and every Thursday, Craigmillar Library, 101 Niddrie Mains Road.
Banned Book Club: Little Brother. Author Cory Doctorow is a science fiction writer, journalist, activist and blogger: his book Little Brother has been challenged by a Florida school for questioning authority and lauding hacking culture. This evening the group will be led by Cory himself, in a friendly discussion about freedom of expression at home, online and internationally. Cory has made the book available free here: please read it before attending the meeting. 5.15pm, The Saltire Society, 9 Fountain Close, 22 High Street. Free but please book via Brown Paper Tickets as space is limited. A Book Week Scotland event.
Ewan McLennan playing live at Coda: Ewan McLennan has, in a short space of time, become known as a guitarist, balladeer and storyteller cut in the old style: a songwriter for whom social justice is still a burning issue. His new album was released just last month, and he drops in today as part of his UK promotional tour. 5.30pm, Coda Music, 12 Bank Street, The Mound. All welcome.
In The Shadow of Forward Motion: this film, a collaboration between artists David Wojnarowicz and Ben Neill, will be screened as part of Edinburgh College of Art’s History of Art Research Seminar series. 5.15pm, Hunter Building Lecture Theatre, Edinburgh College of Art, Lauriston Place.
LGBT: What You Need To Know about Power of Attorney. A special presentation by family counsel Alan Inglis on the benefits of Power of Attorney and its value to the LGBT community; there will be an opportunity to ask questions after the presentation. 2.30-4pm, LGBT Health and Wellbeing, 9 Howe Street. Booking preferred: contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0131 523 1100.
The Naming of Cancer: Tracy S Rosenberg launches this fourteen-poem book, which begins in hospital and from there explores the experience of cancer from a multitude of perspectives. 6-7pm, Scottish Poetry Library, 5 Crichton’s Close. Free tickets can be booked via eventbrite.
Poets Against Humanity. Poets are horrible people – to prove this Rachel McCrum, Marianne MacRae and Kevin McLean will be inserting rude things into works of great literature, in order to desecrate and entertain in equal measure. Based on the game ‘Cards Against Humanity’ – but with poets. 8pm, Banshee Labyrinth, Niddry Street. Free: donations welcome! No booking required – just turn up. For more information contact email@example.com.
Lunchtime Concert: Tim Cais (cello) and Chris Harding (piano) will play Mendelsshon Cello Sonata in B Flat Major Op 45, Prokofiev Cello Sonata in C Major, Op 119 and Webbern Two Pieces for Cello and Piano (1899). 1.15-2.15pm, St Andrew’s and St George’s West Church, George Street. Free entry.
Telling Stories: Collecting Contemporary Middle Eastern Art at the British Museum. Venetia Porter, Curator of Islamic and Modern Middle East Art at the British Museum, will explore the process by which art from the Middle East is both acquired and displayed at the BM. 6-8pm, Edinburgh College of Art, Lauriston Place. Free tickets can be booked via eventbrite.
Ecumenical Friends of St Cuthbert’s: Hanne Gormley – The Story of the German Church. Everyone welcome: bring your own sandwiches, tea and coffee provided. 12.30-2pm, St Cuthbert’s Church, Lothian Road. £1.50 per person, Organised by Edinburgh City Centre Churches TOGETHER.
Book Marks: a festival of books, celebrating the huge variety of ways in which the book form is used by staff, students and alumni of the College. Meet the makers, browse and buy zines, comics and artists’ books, or debate the future of the book over a coffee in the College’s Grand Sculpture Court. 4-8pm, Grand Sculpture Court, Edinburgh College of Art, Lauriston Place. Free and open to all. For further information call 0131 651 5732.
Michel Doneda 60th Birthday Concert: Swiss improvising saxophonist Michel Doneda will celebrate his birthday with a concert of solo improvised saxophone; he will be joined and supported by Edinburgh’s free improvisation collective, Edimpro.This event is part of the gap in the air festival, a celebration of experimental music and sonic art at the Talbot Rice Gallery. 8.45 for 9pm, Talbot Rice Gallery, University of Edinburgh, Old College, South Bridge. Free tickets can be booked via eventbrite.
McCrae’s Battalion: a service to commemorate the centenary of the Raising of the Battalion in the Parish of St Cuthbert. Made up of young Edinburgh men from all walks of life, it was officially the 16th Royal Scots, but is better known by its affectionate name, McCrae’s Battalion, after its charismatic colonel Sir George McCrae. It is also known as the sporting battalion because it was largely composed of professional and amateur sportsmen. The 1350 men who signed up after a meeting in the Usher Hall 100 years ago today made their way on foot down Lothian Road, past St Cuthbert’s and St John’s, to sign up formally in Castle Street. The Padre to the Battalion was The Revd James Black, later to become Minister of St George’s West (now St Andrew’s and St George’s West), and subsequently Moderator of the General Assembly. The men left to go to war from Waverley Station, most of them destined never to return. 12.45pm, St Cuthbert’s Church, Lothian Road. All welcome. Organised by OASIS in partnership with Business Matters, Workplace Chaplaincy Scotland and McCrae’s Battalion Trust.
Edinburgh Napier University Postgraduate Open Evening: whether you want to study full-time, part-time or by distance learning, find out more about postgraduate and professional courses at Napier, with start dates in January and September 2015. Talks, plus the opportunity to discuss your questions about courses, finance, accommodation and admissions with academic and support staff. Refreshments available; live music from Napier students! 5.30-7.30pm, Edinburgh Napier University, Craiglockhart Campus, Glenlockhart Road.
Dinner Church at Canongate Kirk: a community potluck meal around a common table. Eat together, read scripture, offer prayers, reflect and sing. Whatever your tradition, whatever your community, everyone is welcome at the table – visitors to Edinburgh as much as local residents. Dinner Church is based on an idea from St Lydia’s Church in Brooklyn. 6.30pm, Harry Younger Hall, Little Lochend Close, down the Royal Mile from Canongate Kirk. All welcome; for more information contact Katie at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PRINT MEDIA: a series of lectures exploring the broad scope of print within the field of contemporary visual arts practice. Henry Collingham, a designer from NE England working across media in product design, interaction design, film and animation – and a ‘committed nerd’ – will consider how 3D printing has changed our world, and explore technological advances within artistic printmaking practice, how they often herald new developments in the industry, and what problems these advances have addressed. 6.30-7.30pm, Edinburgh Printmakers, Union Street. Tickets cost £5 or two for £8 and can be booked via eventbrite.
St John’s RC Primary School Parent Council’s Pamper, Presents and Prosecco Spa Night! Amazing beauty treatments and unique handmade gifts. Complementary glass of bubbles on arrival and free goody bag for the first 50 people. 7-10pm, St John’s School Hall, Hamilton Terrace, Portobello. Tickets £5 – reserve via the Parent Council Facebook page or pay on the door.