I was at the final Festival concert on Saturday night. Like the opening concert, there were lots of empty seats, no doubt due to the “challenging” programme! However, there was a first for me: people walking out during Jonathan Mills’ “difficult” work Sandakan Threnody.
Jonathan of course took a bow at the end of his work, probably wisely, since it is unlikely ever to be performed again!
In his speech he reeled off statistics about the number of performances, but never mentioned audience figures and there have been many empty seats at this Festival. He also failed to deal with the major criticisms of his programmes – too many themes. Very little Scottish culture, despite it being the third item in the Festival mission statement. I notice the incoming Festival director has noticed and intends to showcase more Scottish theatre.