Scotsman’s critics choice: Five must-see shows on this week

THE Scotsman’s arts critics round up their must-see films, theatre and concerts for the next week

Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Monty Python and the Holy Grail


Sunday Classics: Dresden Philharmonic

Tomorrow’s Sunday Classics concert at the Usher Hall features the Dresden Philharmonic under the baton of former cellist Michael Sanderling. They’re joined by another fine cellist, Sol Gabetta, above, for Elgar’s enchanting Cello Concerto. The programme opens with Wagner’s Meistersinger Overture and ends with Beethoven’s great ‘Eroica’ Symphony. Ken Walton

Usher Hall, Edinburgh, tomorrow, 0131-228 1155


Pleasance Sessions

The Pleasance Sessions returns as a trim weekender with a live music line-up of acts from across the Central Belt and the Pleasance Sessions Market Place open for business this afternoon with representation from many of the country’s independent labels and promoters. Acoustic guitar ace RM Hubbert, Glasgow duo Bdy_Prts and the Krautrock-influenced Outblinker play tonight, while tomorrow’s line-up encompasses the folk sounds of Blue Rose Code and Yusuf Azak, plus hometown hero Withered Hand on more of an indie pop kick. Plus alternative beer festival Och!Toberfest. Fiona Shepherd

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Pleasance, Edinburgh, tonight and tomorrow,


Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Monty Python’s first proper big screen outing gets a 40th anniversary re-issue, replete with animated sing-along subtitles, a newly filmed introduction from the remaining Pythons and optional cosplay, should any fans wish to be a knight who says “Ni”. Mostly shot on location around Scotland, the Python’s irreverent take on Arthurian legend was a huge it in its day and remains a rare example of a great British comedy that’s properly funny and subversive, even after multiple viewings. Alistair Harkness

Selected cinemas, 14 October


Arthur Melville: Adventures in Colour

Opening at the Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh today, this is the trailblazing 19th century artist’s first retrospective for 35 years and well overdue. Born in 1885 in Loanhead-of-Guthrie, in what is now Angus, and brought up in East Lothian, Melville began commuting to Edinburgh for drawing lessons at the age of 13. After his painting A Cabbage Garden was exhibited at the Royal Academy in London in 1878, the young artist spent time developing his skills in France before an 1881 journey to Cairo, Karachi and Baghdad sent his career off in a fascinating new direction. Moira Jeffrey

Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh, until 17 January, 0131-624 6200


The Last Yankee

Part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts and Film Festival (see feature page 24), Rapture Theatre’s new production of this late Arthur Miller play – a 70-minute four-hander in which two men visit their wives in a mental health clinic near New York – delves deep into the consequences of mental illness, and attitudes to it. Michael Emans directs, and David Tarkenter and Pauline Turner deliver two supremely moving performances as Leroy Hamilton, the last yankee of the title, and his troubled wife, Patricia. Joyce McMillan

Perth Concert Hall tonight, and on tour across Scotland until 7 November,