The festivals may be staggering through their last full week, but there’s still plenty going on in Edinburgh – from summer fetes to afternoon teas, and from life on Mars to life on Okidoki, you’ll find it all here; have a great week! And please remember to check details with the venue before setting out.

MONDAY 24TH AUGUST 2015

Cameo Toddler Time: short screenings for pre-school children and their parents and carers. Today’s film is Q Pootle 5: Programme 6 (U). Friendship is at the heart of this CBeebies series, set on the wonderful planet of Okidoki where Q Pootle 5 and his friends find fun and adventure. 11am, Cameo, Home Street. Tickets cost £3 per child, accompanying adults free, and may be purchased in person, by calling the Box Office on 0871 902 5723 or online here: no adult will be admitted without a child.

Edinburgh Book Fringe: daily events – all of them free (donations appreciated) – for two weeks at Word Power Books, Edinburgh’s independent radical bookshop. Today: former Guardian journalist Murray Armstrong discusses his historical novel The Liberty Tree, ‘the compelling story of (Thomas) Muir’s trajectory as radical agitator and democratic hero’, and Muir’s legacy, on the 250th anniversary of his birth in 1765. 1pm, Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street. All welcome! No booking required, but arrive promptly as space is limited.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: Momoko Sakai (cello). 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

St Mary’s Cathedral Coffee Concert: John Bryden plays Elgar on the Cathedral Steinway. The recital will be followed by coffee and shortbread. 10.30am, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

Curated by…. a season of films hand-picked by invited Festival regulars. Each screening will feature an in-person introduction by the curator, revealing their passion for the film and their reasons for choosing it. Today: Alan Bissett presents Jaws (12A), Steven Spielberg’s classic that gave millions of us an insurmountable fear of swimming in the sea. 9pm, Cameo, Home Street. Tickets may be purchased from the Box Office in person, by calling 0871 902 5723 or online.

St Martin’s Art Exhibition: work by over 35 local artists and craftspeople, including photography, painting, glasswork, woodwork, knitting, upholstery and quilting. Cafe with homebaking. Opens today 12 noon-7pm, at same times every day until Friday 28th and then 10am-12.30pm on Saturday 29th August, when there will also be a coffee morning. St Martin’s Community Resource Centre, Dalry Road. All welcome!

Grassmarket Community Cinema: The Kite Runner (12A).  The harrowing and painful, but also heart-warming and uplifting, story of two boys, wealthy Amir and Hassan, the son of a servant, growing up in Afghanistan.  The boys’ friendship is shattered when Amir fails to protect Hassan from a brutal attack and later drives him away to conceal his shame. After years living in exile in America as a writer, Amir returns home to atone for his sins by finding his old friend’s missing son. Based on the novel by Khaled Hosseini. 7pm, Grassmarket Community Project, 86 Candlemaker Row. All welcome; free – donations to the Project also very welcome. The cafe will be open – please use it!

Lee Miller: Wonder and Horror. Richard Calvocoressi, Director, Henry Moore Foundation and author of Lee Miller: Portraits From A Life (2002), discusses Miller’s career as a war photographer and as a correspondent for Vogue. 12.45-1.30pm, Hawthornden Lecture Theatre, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. Free and unticketed.

The Big West Fest: Active Inquiry Presents Resilience. The Edinburgh-based drama group presents a piece of legislative theatre exploring how community groups can survive and thrive in the current economic and political climate. 6pm, WHALE Arts, 30 Westburn Grove. This event is part of The Big West Fest, WHALE’s on-site festival offering a programme of free performances and activities from today until Saturday 29th August for anyone over the age of 16.

Thomas Muir Memorial Lecture: Alex Salmond MP delivers the inaugural lecture on the 250th anniversary of the birth of Thomas Muir, Glaswegian-born lawyer, political reform campaigner – and Australia’s first political prisoner. 7pm for 7.30pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free but tickets are required and may be obtained from Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street (0131 662 9112) or from the Cathedral office (0131 225 6293 – open mornings only); a suggested donation of £5 (or more) per person is invited to cover costs. Organised by Word Power Books and supported by Friends of Thomas Muir.

For Crying Out Loud: exclusive screenings for parents and carers and their babies under 12 months. Baby changing, bottle-warming and buggy parking facilities are available. Today’s film is She’s Funny That Way (12A) starring Imogen Poots, Jennifer Aniston and Rhys Ifans in ‘a frothy tale of romantic misadventures’. 11am, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets cost £4.50/£3.50 per adult (maximum 2 adults per baby) and may be obtained from the Box Office in person or by calling 0131 228 6382.

The Otesha Project UK: Otesha are a mobile community of young people who are spending four weeks cycling through Scotland, visiting schools, youth clubs and communities to perform the Otesha UK Play and run workshops on how global issues affect everyday lives. ‘Otesha‘ means ‘reason to dream’ or ‘to plant something and watch it grow’, and the project’s aim is to create a movement of young people with the power, skills and creativity to make a fairer, cleaner and greener world. Come and find out how to live in a way that makes good things happen without harming others or the planet. North Edinburgh Arts, Pennywell Court, Muirhouse. The performance will take place after school – please contact NEA on 0131 315 2151 for more information and time.

Come and See: one-off screenings of classic films. Today: Dirty Harry (15) – tough, sardonic San Francisco police inspector Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood) is assigned to track and apprehend an unhinged, manipulative killer, and finds himself forced to go beyond the stringent limits of protocol to do so. Don Siegel’s fourth collaboration with Eastwood is a ‘crisp, suspenseful cat-and-mouse thriller that manages to raise difficult questions about the ethics of law and order in the process’. 8.15pm, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary.

LGBT Spiritual Space: Mindfulness Meditation. Maxwell Reay, NHS Mental Health Community Chaplain, offers a supportive space for people to discuss and develop ideas of spirituality and identity. For people of all faiths or none. Today: a group opportunity to discover what is meant by mindfulness, and how it relates to spirituality and positive mental wellbeing. 6.30-7.30pm (within weekly Drop-in, which runs 5.30-8pm), LGBT Health & Wellbeing, 9 Howe Street. For more information please contact Alison Wren on 0131 652 3283 or alison@lgbthealth.org.uk.

Ragged University: To Space – The Human Costs of Space Exploration. Dr Niamh Shaw, performer, scientist, engineer and former full-time academic and peer-reviewed published author, is now in training to go into space. She will talk about MarsOne, a non-profit organisation based in the Netherlands that aims to establish a permanent human colony on Mars by 2025 and to document the process on a reality TV show that will begin airing in 2015. 7-9pm, Leith Beer Company, 58 The Shore. Free, no need to book – just turn up; food will be provided.

TUESDAY 25TH AUGUST 2015

Mrs Mash: a new weekly session with songs and stories for young children. 10.30-11am today and every Tuesday, Filmhouse, Lothian Road.

Lego Swap Shop: an event mainly for trading extra or double mini-figures, but come and see what else might be on offer! Lots of activities too, plus competitions. 3pm, Waterstones, Cameron Toll Centre, 6 Lady Road.

Edinburgh Book Fringe: daily events – all of them free (donations appreciated) – for two weeks at Word Power Books, Edinburgh’s independent radical bookshop. Today: acclaimed authors Nora Chassler, Kirsty Logan and Regi Claire read from their work. 1pm, Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street. All welcome! No booking required, but arrive promptly as space is limited.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: Taylor MacLennan (flute) and Sarah Park (piano). 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

St Mary’s Cathedral Tours: free tours of Scotland’s largest cathedral, a renowned masterpiece of Victorian Gothic architecture designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott. 10am today and every Tuesday in August, St Mary’s Cathedral (meet inside West Door), Palmerston Place. Free. Also at 2.15pm each Friday in August.

RBGE Adult Education Evening: the Botanics run weekly classes and weekend workshops in many subjects, from botany and horticulture to herbology, garden history, art and wellbeing. Come along tonight to meet the tutors and find out about the latest range of courses – everything from one day courses to professional qualifications. Refreshments provided. 6-8pm, Conference Room, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 20a Inverleith Row. Free, all welcome, no booking required.

The Big West Fest: Stitch ‘N Time Exhibition and WHALE Mural Launch. WHALE’S resident textiles group previews its new exhibition Stitching Through Time; participants’ stories accompany interactive displays of crafting and sewing techniques. The brand new WHALE mural will be unveiled, and there will be a screening of a new film, A Walk Around Wester Hailes. 6pm, WHALE Arts, 30 Westburn Grove. These events are part of The Big West Fest, WHALE’s on-site festival offering a programme of free performances and activities from today until Saturday 29th August for anyone over the age of 16.

The Man Who Would Be King (U): John Huston’s classic adventure film screened to celebrate the 85th birthday of its star, and one of Edinburgh’s most famous sons, Sean Connery. In this adaptation of a story by Rudyard Kipling, two British soldiers-of-fortune seek their wealth in a remote region of Afghanistan. Co-starring Michael Caine, Christopher Plummer and Saeed Jaffrey. 2.30pm and 8.20pm, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary.

Edinburgh Art Festival – Spotlight Tours of Scottish Art: People, Places, Ideas. Guided tours of the City Art Centre’s Scottish Art collection, focusing on people, places and ideas. 11am or 3pm, (meet at reception) City Art Centre, 2 Market Street. No booking required, free – suggested donation £2. Also at same times on Thursday 27th August and Saturday 29th August 2015.

Edinburgh Festival Voluntary Guides Association: My Edinburgh. Hamish Coghill offers a personal odyssey of Auld Reekie, its beauty, its history, its characters, its literature, its nooks, its crannies – and its lifetime attraction. 7pm for 7.30pm, City Chambers, 253 High Street. Free; all welcome.

Chamber Music: String Quintet. Senior players from St Mary’s Music School perform Schubert’s sublime String Quintet and a new work by Tom David Wilson. 8.30pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Tickets cost £5 (children admitted free).

Cameo Silver Screen: if you are 60+ join the Silver Screen Club and enjoy weekly screenings for just £5 per person, which includes tea, coffee and biscuits. Membership is free: ask at the Box Office. Today’s films are The Wolfpack (15) at 2.10pm and 3.55pm, Mistress America (15) at 4.20pm, Trainwreck (15) at 3.45pm and The Gift (15) at 1.20pm, Cameo, Home Street. Tickets may be purchased in person, by calling the Box Office on 0871 902 5723 or online; non-members are welcome to attend these screenings but will be charged the normal ticket prices.

WEDNESDAY 26TH AUGUST 2015

Celebrity Organ Recital: Michael Harris (Organist and Master of Music, St Giles’) will play Muffat Toccata Decima, Rinck Six variations on a Theme of Corelli Op 56, JS Bach Prelude and Fugue in G BWV 541, Ritter Sonata No 3 in A, Heathcote Statham Rhapsody on a Ground, Judith Weir Ettrick Banks and Dupre Prelude and Fugue in B Major. 8pm, St Giles’ Cathedral, High Street. Tickets cost £8/£5 (students)/accompanied children free, and are available from the Cathedral shop (0131 226 0673), from the Fringe Festival Box Office by calling 0131 226 0000, online here, or on the door (sta).

Edinburgh Book Fringe: daily events – all of them free (donations appreciated) – for two weeks at Word Power Books, Edinburgh’s independent radical bookshop. Today: graphic designer and Yes Scotland artist Stewart Bremner and The National cartoonist Greg Moodie discuss their work. 1pm, Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street. All welcome! No booking required, but arrive promptly as space is limited.

Lunchtime Concert: Morley Whitehead plays organ requests. 1.10pm, Morningside Parish Church, Braid Road/Cluny Gardens. Free: a retiring collection will be taken for the church’s music scholarship fund.

Thomas Muir by David Martin, 1785

Thomas Muir in Literature: A Portrait Gallery Tour. Professor Gerard Carruthers and Professor Nigel Leask (University of Glasgow) lead a tour of selected works from the Portrait Gallery collection relating to the 18th century republican and revolutionary Thomas Muir of Huntershill and his circle. The tour will discuss Muir’s relationship to Scottish culture in his own day and afterwards, especially through literature. It will also consider Muir’s associations and his journeying from Glasgow to Edinburgh, Paris, Botany Bay and the American continent. 12.45-1.30pm, Great Hall, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen Street. Free but places are limited and tickets should be obtained in advance from the Information Desk at the Scottish National Gallery or by calling 0131 624 6560.

LGBT Icebreakers: if you want to meet people, are just coming out, or don’t feel confident going out on the ‘scene’, try this informal, fun and friendly social group for LGBT people and anyone questioning their sexuality or gender identity. For over 18s only. 7.30-9.30pm, The Regent Bar, Montrose Terrace. For more information please contact Alison Wren on 0131 652 3283 or alison@lgbthealth.org.uk.

St Mary’s Cathedral Coffee Concert: John Bryden plays Mozart on the Cathedral Steinway. The recital will be followed by coffee and shortbread. 10.30am, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

‘Lifting the Lid’ Exhibition Tours: Manuscripts Curator Olive Geddes leads a tour of Lifting the Lid: 400 Years of food and drink in Scotland, an exhibition that uses the Library’s rich collections to explore Scotland’s changing relationship with food and drink, the diversity of Scotland’s larder and some of the myths and traditions of the Scottish diet. 11am-12 noon, National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge. Booking is essential and may be made by calling 0131 623 3734 or online here.

LGBT Women’s Wellbeing Group: an inclusive group offering the chance to meet other LGBT women in a relaxed environment – a chance to chat, pick up information and take part in activities promoting health and wellbeing. The group is open to all LGBT women and welcomes transgender people who identify primarily as women. Today: Summer Nights – a visit to a range of free festival shows, line-up to be confirmed. 3-8pm; for details of meeting place, etc and to join the mailing list to keep up to date with the group, please contact Alison Wren on 0131 652 3283 or alison@lgbthealth.org.uk.

The Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival: the only event run both by and for the television industry, celebrating the creativity, diversity and inspirational talent in the field, and debating the major issues facing the industry. Today: (1) At 4.30pm, Masterchef: The Professionals – an exclusive preview screening of the first episode of the eighth series of the show, which returns to BBC2 in the autumn. The screening will be followed by a Q & A session with judge and chef Monica Galetti; (2) At 8.30pm, Singing in the Rainforest – an exclusive screening of the new show from Watch, which sees musicians leave their creature comforts behind and embrace life with remote tribes from all around the world. Scottish indie rock band Glasvegas visited the Waorani of Bameno, Ecuador, in one of the most remote areas of the Amazonian rainforest, two days by canoe from the nearest road. The screening will be followed by a Q & A session chaired by Andrew Collins and a live performance from Glasvegas. Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary. The festival concludes at the Filmhouse on Thursday 27th August: see listings.

Edinburgh Gay Men’s Book Group: an inclusive group where you can meet new people and read and discuss interesting books. 7-9pm, LGBT Health & Wellbeing, 9 Howe Street. For more information please contact info@gaybookgroup.co.uk.

Tollcross Community Council: the meeting will include a Living Streets presentation by David Hunter, feedback on planning developments in Kings Stable Road and Fountainbridge, and licensing applications. 7-9pm, Tollcross Community Centre, 117 Fountainbridge. All who live or work in the area are welcome.  For more information please visit the Community Council’s website here.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: Chalmers Ensemble. 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

THURSDAY 27TH AUGUST 2015

Milk and Honey? Edinburgh Macmillan Art Show. Original artwork and jewellery for sale, with all proceeds going to Macmillan Cancer Support. The show launched in 2003 and has raised over £140,000 for the charity to date. Over 120 artists will exhibit, including Norman Ackroyd, Trina Bohan, Aileen Grant, Rona MacLean, Cat Outram, Sheena Fleming Phillips and Jack Vettriano, plus ten jewellers, including Angela Boag and Caroline Temple. 10am-7pm today, 10am-4pm on 28th, 29th and 30th August, Bonhams, 22 Queen Street. Free admission.

Blackwell’s Edinburgh Presents Writers at the Fringe: every Thursday throughout the Fringe, Blackwell’s invites a selection of Scottish performers to give a taste of their work. New and unpublished works of literary art stand alongside established novelists, with any and all genres free to be expressed, from poetry to cutting-edge drama, folk music, contemporary fiction and all that is found between. Tonight’s line-up is Michael Cannon, Malacky Tallock, Carol Fox, John Mackay and Andrew O’Hagan. 5.45pm for 6pm, Blackwell’s, South Bridge. Free tickets may be obtained from the shop’s front desk, by calling 0131 622 8229, emailing events.edinburgh@blackwell.co.uk, via eventbrite here or from the Fringe Box Office here.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: Oksana Mavrodii (soprano) and Anna Mavromatidi (piano). 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

The Chalmers Ensemble: the horn and string quartet returns to the gallery to play works by Mozart, Hoffmann and Rebay. 6-6.30pm, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen Street. Free and unticketed.

Cameo Big Scream: screenings exclusively for parents and carers with babies under one year old. Membership of the Big Scream Club is free (ask at the Box Office) and lasts until your baby’s first birthday. Today’s film is Casablanca (U) starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. 10.30am, Cameo, Home Street. Tickets are at the usual matinee price (babies admitted free), and may be purchased in person, by calling the Box Office on 0871 902 5723 or online here.

M.C. Escher, Day and Night, 1938, All M.C. Escher works copyright © The M.C. Escher Company B.V. -B

Escher: A Mathematician’s Eye View. Ian Stewart, Professor Emeritus of Mathematics (University of Warwick) looks in simple, non-technical terms and with many illustrations, at the relationship between Escher’s art and mathematics, and explores applications of these mathematical concepts to the real world. No specialist mathematical knowledge is required, just an interest in visual patterns. 12.45-1.30pm, Hawthornden Lecture Theatre, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. Free and unticketed.

Edinburgh Book Fringe: daily events – all of them free (donations appreciated) – for two weeks at Word Power Books, Edinburgh’s independent radical bookshop. Today: writer and academic Penny Johnson (Birzeit University, Ramallah)  and Palestinian writer, lawyer and human rights activist Raja Shehadeh discuss their new book, Shifting Sands: The Unravelling of the Old Order in the Middle East, which brings together fifteen impassioned and informed voices to talk about a region with unlimited potential and yet which can feel ‘as though the world around me is on fire’. ‘This intelligent, reasoned perspective on life in the Middle East is a breath of fresh air’. 1.30pm, Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street. All welcome! No booking required, but arrive promptly as space is limited.

Meet the Glasshouse Staff: find out more about this stunning collection of plants from the people who care for them. Every month meet a different member of the indoor horticulture team, each with different specialist knowledge. 1-2pm, Glasshouses, Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh, Inverleith Row. Free with Glasshouse entry (£5/£4, children under 5 and essential carers free).

Image (c) Neil Hanna

Phill Jupitus Sketch Comic in Conversation: each Thursday evening during the festivals, Phill Jupitus will be in conversation with a special guest – a passionate, personal and irreverent look at art, a chat about what Phill has seen in the galleries this week, and possibly some sketching! The guests’ identities will be announced nearer the time. 7-8pm, Hawthornden Lecture Theatre, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. Free and unticketed.

Edinburgh Art Festival – Spotlight Tours of Scottish Art: People, Places, Ideas. Guided tours of the City Art Centre’s Scottish Art collection, focusing on people, places and ideas. 11am or 3pm, (meet at reception) City Art Centre, 2 Market Street. No booking required, free – suggested donation £2. Also at same times on Saturday 29th August 2015.

Made in Prague: the New Czech Cinema UK Tour 2015. The biennial UK showcase of contemporary Czech cinema is back for the fifth time, with five titles capturing the country’s dramatic past and its influence on contemporary life and culture. Today’s film is Nowhere in Moravia (Dira u Hanusovic) (15), Miroslav Krobot’s humorous debut focusing on eccentric characters living an isolated life and looking for love. 6pm, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary.

The Big West Fest: Together Enjoy Being TogetherThe latest play from the WHALES without a Cause drama group is set in the resort of Hailes Castle. It’s always been a popular spot for holidaymakers looking for cheap drink and fun times, but how will its new upmarket appearance go down with the regulars? And what is the shady manager Rupert up to?  7pm, WHALE Arts, 30 Westburn Grove. Also at same time on Friday 28th and Saturday 29th August, with an additional show at 2.30pm on Saturday 29th. This event is part of The Big West Fest, WHALE’s on-site festival offering a programme of free performances and activities from today until Saturday 29th August for anyone over the age of 16.

The Guardian Edinburgh International Television Festival: the only event run both by and for the television industry, celebrating the creativity, diversity and inspirational talent in the field, and debating the major issues facing the industry. Today: (1) At 6pm, Hand of God – an Amazon Original Series. A psychological drama about a morally corrupt judge who suffers a breakdown and believes God is compelling him onto a path of vigilante justice. The screening will be followed by a Q & A session chaired by Andrew Collins, with series creator Ben Watkins, director Marc Forster and cast members Ron Perlman, Dana Delany and Alona Tal. (2) Doctor Who: The Magician’s Apprentice – a chance to see the opening episode of BBC1’s new series, written by Steven Moffat, produced by Peter Bennett and directed by Hettie Macdonald. The screening will be followed by a Q & A session with guests to be announced later. Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary.

Guilty As Sin: 9pm, The Old Chain Pier, Trinity Crescent.

JUST Festival: Moving Minds: A Community-Led Dialogue/Workshop. Gypsy/Travellers and MECOPP (Multi-Ethnic Carers of People Project) will lead this interactive workshop – a chance to dispel myths and promote dialogue. This seminar should be of relevance to all who are interested in looking at their own policies and practices with regard to minority groups, and especially to those who work with carers. 12.30pm, St John’s Church, Princes Street. Free but booking is essential and may be made by emailing donna@mecopp.org.uk. Read The Edinburgh Reporter’s article on the JUST Festival event Gypsy Travellers – Has Time Run Out? here.

FRIDAY 28TH AUGUST 2015

St Mary’s Cathedral Tours: free tours of Scotland’s largest cathedral, a renowned masterpiece of Victorian Gothic architecture designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott. 2.15pm, St Mary’s Cathedral (meet inside West Door), Palmerston Place. Free.

Edinburgh Book Fringe: daily events – all of them free (donations appreciated) – for two weeks at Word Power Books, Edinburgh’s independent radical bookshop. In today’s closing session, Janice Galloway reads from Jellyfish: A Short Book of Short Stories and discusses her work. ‘Stories that walk with steady, nerve-cracking skill down a nightmare edge. A virtuoso work’. (New Statesman). 1pm, Word Power Books, West Nicolson Street. All welcome! No booking required, but arrive promptly as space is limited.

The Big West Fest: Whale-Pod – an introduction. A drop-in session for anyone who feels that they could do more with their creative skills; David Henderson of WHALE Arts will talk about the Whale-Pod, a space in the WHALE Arts Centre for anyone from the community with an interest in arts, crafts and design to come to to think about the possible development of their skills. Local crafter Margaret Stewart, who makes and sells her own jewellery and cards, will also be available to chat. 12 noon-1pm, WHALE Arts, 30 Westburn Grove. Tea & biscuits provided! This event is part of The Big West Fest, WHALE’s on-site festival offering a programme of free performances and activities from today until Saturday 29th August for anyone over the age of 16.

The Macular Society: Sarah Kilbey will talk about her work with deafened and hard of hearing people. Sarah, who has had hearing loss since her teens and is now profoundly deaf, is a non-stipendiary priest at St John’s Episcopal Church in Edinburgh. She spent 25 years initiating and developing a lipreading service for Lothian Region, for which she was awarded an MBE. 10.30am, Church Hall, London Road Church, corner of London Road and Easter Road. All very welcome; feel free to bring a friend. The Macular Society was formed to help those with macular degeneration to understand their situation and find resources of help and support; through the society, people can receive information about research, discover their capabilities and discuss problems and solutions with others who have macular problems. The main Edinburgh branch meets on the last Friday of every month except December, and there are also local support groups meeting regularly in Morningside, Stockbridge and Portobello. For more information contact the group leader on 0131 449 7716 or deputy leader on 0131 667 3598. Further information may also be found on the Macular Society’s website here.

The History of Whisky with Cadenheads: Mark Davidson, Jolly Toper, whisky tasting host of over 10 years and manager of Cadenheads Whisky Shop, Canongate, will explore a short history of whisky production and blending in Edinburgh. You will also be invited to sample five different types of whisky; a blend, a single grain, a malt, a whisky influenced by sherry cask maturation, and finally a peaty dram. For over 18s only. 7pm, Museum of Edinburgh, Huntly House, 142 Canongate. Tickets cost £10 each and must be booked in advance via the Usher Hall Box Office, in person, by calling 0131 228 1155 or online here.

A Venetian Family Presented to the Virgin by Saint Lawrence and a Bishop Saint, Tintoretto (Jacopo Robusti), 1570

In Focus: Jacopo Tintoretto and Workshop, A Bishop Saint, and St Lawrence Interceding with the Virgin and Child on Behalf of a Group of Girls and Boys, 1570s-80s. Deputy Director of the Scottish National Gallery Tricia Allerston explores this rarely hung painting, about which little is known; it is possible that the girls in it are orphans, and this suggestion will be explored with reference to the many charitable institutions in Venice in the 16th century. 12.45-1.30pm, Ground Level, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. Free and unticketed.

St Mary’s Cathedral Coffee Concert: John Bryden plays Dvorak on the Cathedral Steinway. The recital will be followed by coffee and shortbread. 10.30am, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

Royal Edinburgh Hospital Summer Fete. Stalls, games, tombola and much more! 11am-2pm, Royal Edinburgh Hospital, Morningside Terrace.

The Greg Proops Film Club: a new podcast covering old and new movies. Comedian Greg Proops invites listeners to sit down and watch some of his favourite films with him. At these screenings, Greg will record 30 minute live introductions, which will be recorded for the podcast; after the film join him in the foyer, where he will be signing copies of his new publication, Smartest Book in the World. Today’s film is Young Frankenstein (PG) starring Gene Wilder, Marty Feldman and Madeline Kahn. 8.30pm, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online: prices vary.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: City of Edinburgh Music School. 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

Guid Crack: A Canuck in Scotland. Canadian storyteller Michael Williams shares stories that link Canada and Scotland, gathered during his thirty years of living in his adopted home. Come and celebrate your own stories of home and adopted homes at Edinburgh’s monthly storytelling night. Accompanied young adults welcome. 7.30pm, The Waverley Bar, St Mary’s Street. Entry by suggested donation of £3.

Planet Earth Rock and Roll: ‘with at least one kaftan’… 9pm, The Skylark, 241-243 Portobello High Street.

SATURDAY 29TH AUGUST 2015

Peter Millett: Johnny Danger DIY Spy. An hour of fun and laughter with Peter Millett and his amazing new spy series: Johnny Danger, DIY Spy: Licensed to Thrill. 11am-12noon, Central Children’s Library, George IV Bridge. Free but booking is essential and may be made via eventbrite here. To help the library manage bookings, please only order a ticket for your child – do not book an extra one for any accompanying adult.

Afternoon Tea for Zambia: organised by the Global Concerns Team to raise funds for school fees for Zambian orphans and for skin and eye care for Zambian albinos. 2-4pm, Polwarth Parish Church, Polwarth Terrace. Tickets cost £5 per person, £3 for children over 3 years, and may be purchased from the Church Office on 0131 346 2711.

Summer Storytime: GigantosaurusCome and listen to Jonny Duddle’s tale about a young dinosaur who cries wolf one too many times – then join in arts and activities related to the story. 3pm, Waterstones, 83 George Street.

St Mary’s Cathedral Lunchtime Recital: Hector Scott (violin) and Anna Mavromatidi (piano). 1.10pm, St Mary’s Cathedral, Palmerston Place. Free.

Ragged University: IT and Biscuits. If you want to learn basic computer skills, how to find free and legal software and how to communicate with the world, come to this free IT workshop, which offers free tutorials and one-to-one guidance in a relaxed social setting with tea and biscuits. You will need a laptop (but if you don’t have one you can arrange to borrow one) and an active membership of Edinburgh City Libraries. 1-4pm, George Washington Browne Room, Central Library, George IV Bridge. Free, no booking required: for more information please contact the group via the enquiry form on its website here.

Edinburgh Art Festival – Spotlight Tours of Scottish Art: People, Places, Ideas. Guided tours of the City Art Centre’s Scottish Art collection, focusing on people, places and ideas. 11am or 3pm, (meet at reception) City Art Centre, 2 Market Street. No booking required, free – suggested donation £2.

Edinburgh’s Big Beach Busk: now in its sixth year. Musicians, performers, street food, sandcastle competition (tbc), crafts. There is no charge to perform and no booking is required – just turn up! 12 noon-11pm, Portobello Prom, Portobello EH15 1HF. For more information see the event’s Facebook page here. ‘It’s lots of tiny little parts all coming together to make something really amazing…’ (Paul Lambie, founder & organiser).

Bohemia Moon Art & Craft Fair: over 35 stalls with artist-makers from all over Scotland. Summer cafe open for light refreshments. 10.30am-4.30pm, Greyfriars Kirk, Greyfriars Place. Free entry, all welcome – dog friendly!

National Gallery Highlights Tours: an introduction to and tour of the National Gallery’s permanent collection, focusing on key paintings. 2-2.45pm or 3-3.45pm, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. Free and unticketed.

Head-to-Head Sculpture City Walking Tours. A National Galleries of Scotland walking tour taking a fresh look at Edinburgh’s sculptural and architectural gems – hear the stories behind the city’s imposing figure sculptures and monuments. Please come dressed for the weather and be prepared to walk at a pace, as the tour will cover a large area of the city. 2-3.30pm, meet at main entrance, Scottish National Gallery, The Mound. £10/£8: please book in advance as places are limited to 15 per tour – tickets are available from the gallery’s Information Desk or by calling 0131 624 6560.

Time Honoured 2013 (c) Susan Ratliff

Scottish Glass Society: Inside, Out. An exhibition of contemporary and traditional glass work created by society members and inspired by the theme inside, out. 11am-4pm,  Coburg House Studios, 15 Coburg Street. Ends 10th September 2015. There will be taster sessions with the some of the artists on Saturday 5th September – please see Coburg House Studios’ website for booking details.

Image: Roween Suess

Foam, Foil and Form Workshop: explore the materials and techniques used by the artist in these drop-in art workshops inspired by the sculptures of John Chamberlain. Experiment with colour and form by making miniature foam sculptures, sculpt with foil or create through collage – take your work home! For ages 4+ – please note that children must be accompanied by an adult. 2-4pm, Real Life Science Studio, John Hope Gateway, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Inverleith Row. Free: no booking required.

Edinburgh MELA: Scotland’s festival of world music and dance; three stages featuring Bollywood Love Story, B21, Swami, Sahara UK, Moi et Les Autres, Ashley Jack, Ayrad, Swaryatra, Northernsxposure and many more, plus the MELA Fashion Show, Global Food Village, Market Place and Mela Kidzone. 12 noon-9pm, Leith Links (main entrance just off Duncan Place: take Lothian Bus no. 21 direct to Leith Links). £5 cash on the gate, children under 13 admitted free. To book tickets in advance (Earlybird price of £4 applies until 12 noon on Friday 28th August) or for more information please call 0131 226 0008 or visit the festival’s website here. Also at same times on Sunday 30th August 2015.

Matthew McGhie: the Edinburgh-based musician plays live. 2pm, Sofi’s, Henderson Street.

SUNDAY 30TH AUGUST 2015

Edinburgh MELA: Scotland’s festival of world music and dance; three stages featuring Bollywood Love Story, B21, Swami, Sahara UK, Moi et Les Autres, Ashley Jack, Ayrad, Swaryatra, Northernsxposure and many more, plus the MELA Fashion Show, Global Food Village, Market Place and Mela Kidzone. 12 noon-9pm, Leith Links (main entrance just off Duncan Place: take Lothian Bus no. 21 direct to Leith Links). £5 cash on the gate, children under 13 admitted free. To book tickets in advance (Earlybird price of £4 applies until 12 noon on Friday 28th August) or for more information please call 0131 226 0008 or visit the festival’s website here.

Edinburgh Printmakers Summer Fayre: a family event showcasing a ‘multiples market’ of numerous stalls selling a wide range of quality artists’ multiples – cards, prints, books, zines, postcards, jewellery and much more. Tea and cake available! 11am-5pm, Edinburgh Printmakers, Union Street. Admission free.

Festival Colombiano: a festival of delights celebrating the plants and culture of Colombia! Music, dance, food and children’s activities, plus a chance to find out about the RBGE’s important work in Colombia. 12 noon-7pm, Real Life Science Studio, John Hope Gateway, Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, Inverleith Row. Free: no booking required. With University of Strathclyde, Sabedores-Sabedores, and the Tambora Foundation for Children.

Filmhouse Junior: screenings for a younger audience. Today’s film is Tangled (PG): when charming bandit Flynn hides out in a mysterious tower, he’s taken hostage by Rapunzel, a feisty maid with 70 feet of magical, golden hair. Rapunzel, who’s been looking for her ticket out of the tower where she’s been locked away for years, strikes a deal with the handsome thief, and the unlikely duo sets off on an action-packed adventure. 11am, Filmhouse, Lothian Road. Tickets cost £4 per person, big or small, and may be obtained from the Box Office in person, by calling 0131 228 6382 or online.

St John’s Festival Pulpits: Scottish political leaders come to St John’s to explain what motivates them. The five main parties in Scotland will be represented, each one speaking after St John’s Festival Evensong on Sundays throughout August. Tonight’s speaker is Alison Johnstone MSP, Scottish Green Party. 7pm (approx – after evensong service, which begins at 6pm), St John’s Episcopal Church, Princes Street. All welcome, free. This is the last talk in this series.

Cameo Vintage Sundays: classic films back on the big screen. Today: Shampoo (18) Hal Ashby’s witty social satire, set against the backdrop of Nixon’s election, about a hairdresser who does more than hair… Starring Warren Beatty and Julie Christie. 1pm, Cameo, Home Street. Tickets may be purchased in person, by calling the Box Office on 0871 902 5723 or online here: prices vary.

St Giles’ At Six: Veronica Henderson (cello) and Jill Morton (piano) play Schumann Stucke im Volkston Op 102 and Adagio and Allegro Op 70. 6pm, St Giles’ Cathedral, High Street. Free; retiring collection.