Scottish International Storytelling Festival prepares to welcome back in-person audiences for most diverse festival to date as programme for 2021 Festival is revealed.

The festival will offer online entertainment as well as live events on the High Street.

The programme for the 2021 Scottish International Storytelling Festival is revealed today as the festival theme Imagine promises an eclectic mix of online events spanning across the globe and small-scale face-to-face events. This year’s festival invites audiences to imagine something different. To imagine pasts, futures, or a timeless other. Festival visitors will be invited to dip into dreams and desires, old and new, lost worlds and worlds still to become.

For 2021, the Festival plans to return to theatres, including The Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh. To keep serving international audiences and to reach those who cannot attend in person, the team will also continue to develop the festival’s digital programme. A series of small-scale and safely distanced person-to-person events, including ones in outdoor locations will also form part of the 2021 programme. All plans are subject to Scottish Government guidance in the autumn period.

For the first time SISF 2021 extended an open invitation to storytellers, based or working in Scotland, to join the Festival’s creative process by submitting a proposal on the theme of Imagine. The result is a series of new works developed by storytellers and musicians’, supported by the Scottish Government Festival Expo Fund. Leading storytellers from Scotland and beyond will showcase new works.

Scottish International Storytelling Festival Director Donald Smith said: “Stories and songs are vital for human survival. They carry our emotions, memories and values. They bind us together as families, communities and a nation, especially through tough times. As we emerge from the restrictions imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the Scottish International Storytelling Festival will continue to engage, inspire and entertain as we travel through stories.

Our festival commissions invite us to imagine different pasts, futures, or timeless others, to challenge what we know and create the images of what we are yet to discover. These stories form the core of our live programme, whilst our Guid Crack and Global Lab sessions offer online participation in unique storytelling ceilidhs and workshops. ”

Scottish International Storytelling Festival 

15 – 31 October 2021

Online and in person in Edinburgh and across Scotland

For tickets and more info visit