The Palais du Varieté Spiegeltent is back in George Square Garden ready for the Assembly Festival to fill it up with a variety of acts.

Assembly Festival was awarded £162,962 from The Scottish Government and The City of Edinburgh Council to help fund outdoor events and support the safe return of live events at this year’s Fringe.  

Bromance will run from 3 to 29 August with an experimental acrobatic circus company Barely Methodical Troupe and Nonsense Room Productions musical show You Choose which finishes on 22 August.

This year Assembly will operate from two sites at George Square and Assembly Roxy, and three venues. The third venue is at Princes Street Gardens where there will be outdoor spy-themed escape games for children running daily. There will be a new outdoor stage in George Square Gardens hosting a live programme of music each evening. That begins on 5 August with Edinburgh blues and groove band Heavy Pockets evoking the spirit of 1950s Chicago.

William Burdett-Coutts OBE, Artistic Director of Assembly Festival said: “I can’t begin to describe how wonderful it feels to have live performance back in Edinburgh. After over 40 years on the Edinburgh Fringe, last year was extremely difficult for everyone involved in the arts and Assembly was no exception.

“However, we did embrace digital entertainment and our new platform Assembly Showcatcher is proving to be an excellent way for international Fringe-performers to still take part and for the public who are unable to make it to Edinburgh this year, to enjoy our rich programme of online shows.

“At the same time nothing beats being here in person. At lightning speed we have created a terrific programme and we look forward to welcoming a real audience to real show starting this week.” 

Barely Methodical Troupe performing Bromance this year said: “It all started for us in Edinburgh with Bromance and we’ve gone on to tour the world to sell-out theatres and develop the company from strength to strength. It was devastating for the Fringe not to happen last year and we’re thrilled to be back, performing to live audiences in a city we love and being part of one of the best arts festivals in the world.” 

All Assembly venues have been designed from the ground-up and carry the We’re Good to Go and See It Safely mark meaning they all operate in-line with current Government guidelines for Covid-19. Capacity has been reduced, contactless payments are accepted at all box office, food outlets and bars to avoid unnecessary cash handling; there is additional cleaning between shows as well as hand sanitiser freely available.

The wearing of face coverings will be implemented in line with Government guidance and are currently mandatory indoors. Customers will be contacted in advance should there be any guideline changes that may affect how we operate. Ticket exchanges/refunds are available to customers who are self-isolating. 

And, for those who are unable to travel to Edinburgh, including the huge number of international performers who won’t make it this year, there is Assembly Showcatcher the online season of shows which opens 6 August. Showcatcher, is a powerful new platform to connect audiences with artists.

Developed by the team behind Assembly Festival, Showcatcher is inspired by the open-access format of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe where anyone is allowed to share their story and reach new audiences. It’s a powerful network perfectly equipped to tackle the new normal and can flexibly support shows no matter what form they take.

Live, hybrid or streamed, Showcatcher can power your ticketing or video requirements or seamlessly integrate with your existing solutions. Most importantly, it empowers audiences to discover new work and share their reviews and experiences with fellow fans.   

www.assemblyfestival.com

Assembly Festival LIVE Events Programme 2021 
 

Palais du Variété  

  • Bromance 15:00, 2 – 29 Aug (Not 16 Aug)  
  • You Choose 10:30, 3 – 22 Aug (Not 11 & 18 Aug)  
  • Under Milk Wood: Semi–Skimmed, 20:30, 4 – 11 Aug 
  • Best of Burlesque 22:15, 5 – 29 Aug  
  • Myra’s Story 12:30, 6 – 29 Aug (Not 11, 18 & 25 Aug)  
  • Best of the Fest 23:55, 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21, 27 & 28 Aug 
  • Styx 18:45, 9 – 15 Aug  
  • Out of the Blue 17:00, 10 – 29 Aug (Not 12 & 13 Aug)  
  • Nina Conti 17:00, 12 & 13 Aug  
  • Simon Evans 20:30 14 – 22 Aug  
  • Police Cops: Badass Be Thy Name 18:45, 16 – 29 Aug  
  • Elliot Bibby: Leftover Lunch 10:30, 27 – 29 Aug 

Assembly Roxy Central  

  • Fear of Roses 11:00, 4 – 24 Aug (Not 5, 6, 11 & 18 Aug)  
  • Drag Queen Story Hour 12:45, 4 – 8 Aug  
  • Isabelle Farah 16:15, 4 – 14 Aug  
  • Mediocre White Male 18:00, 4 – 15 Aug  
  • Shell Shock 12:45, 9 – 15 Aug  
  • Comedy Club 4 Kids 14:30, 11 – 22 Aug (Not 18 & 19 Aug) 
  • Podcast Stars, Richard & Greta (AKA Comedians Nina Conti and Shenoah Allen) Record Their Podcast Live 19:45, 12 & 13 Aug  
  • John Luke Roberts: Terrible Wonderful Adaptations 21:30, 6, 13 Aug 
  • Joanne McNally 21:30, 15 – 29 Aug  
  • Burnt Out 18:00, 16 – 22 Aug  
  • The Event 16:15, 16 – 22 Aug 
  • Watson 12:45, 17 – 22 Aug  
  • Jody Kamali and Friends 19:45, 18 – 22 Aug  
  • Boorish Trumpson 14:30, 24 – 29 Aug  
  • Vest-igos 16:30, 24 – 29 Aug 
  • It All 18:00, 25 – 29 Aug 
  • Captain Breadbeard 12:45, 27 – 29 Aug  

Meeting Point @ Princes Street Gardens: Agent November Escape Game  

  • Major X Ploe-Shun 12:00, 14:00, 16:00 & 18:00 | 6, 8-9, 11, 13, 15-16, 18, 20, 22-23, 25, 27 & 29 Aug 
  • Robyn Yew 12:00, 14:00, 16:00 & 18:00 | 7, 10, 12, 14, 17, 19, 21, 24, 26 & 28 Aug