Edinburgh Festivals daily guide: 12 August

Sophie Grabol and Blythe Duff star in the James Plays

Sophie Grabol and Blythe Duff star in the James Plays

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Today’s reviews include The James Plays and Marcel Lucont, while George RR Martin and Alex Salmond visit the Book Festival, and Jay Richardson explores the influence of US improv at the Fringe.

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REVIEWS

Theatre: The James Plays

Theatre critic Joyce McMillan gives her verdict on all three James Plays, which received their world premiere at the Edinburgh Festival Theatre at the weekend as part of the Edinburgh International Festival.

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Comedy: Marcel Lucont Is

Who can resist Marcel Lucont, poet, charlatan, seducer of women and shameless despiser of all that is not French. We walk into the theatre to see Lucont’s liquid eyes, staring arrogantly at us from a giant projected screen.

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Cabaret: Lady Rizo

“Oh, Edinburgh! I feel like we have this tawdry affair,” Lady Rizo purrs at the top of her set. Once a year, she rolls into town for a good ravishing then leaves, already anticipating the next rendezvous.

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Read all The Scotsman Festival reviews

Book Festival: George RR Martin | William McIlvanney

A palpable air of excitement filled the main tent in Charlotte Square last night, where the sell-out crowd waited for the arrival of Game of Thrones creator, George R R Martin. Here is a man – and he confirmed this – who knows how the whole thing ends, who lives and who dies in the most compelling fantasy series of recent times. But, of course, with two books of his Song of Ice and Fire series still to write, he was giving nothing away.

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Book Festival: Alex Salmond

The First Minister gave an impressive if uncharacteristically serious performance at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, writes David Robinson

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INTERVIEWS

The performers bringing US-style improv to the Fringe

Intro: Comedy performers are turning to America for inspiration in honing their sketch and character shows, finds Jay Richardson

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The Book Festival takes a trip to the Middle East

This week sees the Book Festival’s largest gathering of Middle Eastern writers and experts. Tim Cornwell looks at what they’ll be talking about

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GUIDES

Best coffee in Edinburgh: 5 places to refuel during the Festival

What better way to escape the madness of the Fringe street performers and bustling streets than to relax in the aroma of a cosy coffee shop? Whether it’s a caffeine buzz you’re needing or just some chill-out time away from the hubbub of the festival, there is something for everyone in the capital…

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BLOG

Alfie Moore: ‘Skegness is like Miami Vice. Only with socks, rain and tattoos’

Comedian Alfie Moore is a former police sergeant turned stand-up, but even as a former ‘bobby’ he still wishes he could have been a cool American cop…

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TOP RATED SHOWS

Scotsman festival reviews: Top rated of 2014

Want reviews that you can trust? Here you will find an overview of every Scotsman review published in 2014, arranged by star rating.

DAILY DEALS

Half-price Edinburgh Festival tickets

Today’s selection of half-price ticket deals for Edinburgh Festival shows, from The Scotsman and WOW247.

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