In Full

Culture in Full

Film Interview: Mark Cousins on The Eyes of Orson Welles

It’s a rainy August morning in Edinburgh and inside a room at Summerhall, the former vet school turned arts and festival venue, Mark Cousins is pointing at a big abstract self-portrait of Orson Welles. “It’s a 4K blow-up of this one,” says Cousins, guiding me to a display case housing the original. The painting – part of the first ever exhibition of Welles’ rarely seen artwork – is more impressionistic in its smaller form. It shows him as an old man, Lear-like and reflective. “This is Orson Welles at his most self-aware,” Cousins says. “He dappled it with a toothbrush and see that eye there?” – he highlights its haunting blankness – “If you look over there, that’s it blown up massively.”

Paloma Faith

Music review: Paloma Faith, Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh

Given how outspoken she is on the issues of the day, it’s no big surprise that Paloma Faith has something to say about artists who sell themselves to commerce; about “Johnny Rotten pretending he likes butter” and so on. If she does it, it’s because the product means something to her – like the brand of car which she would have had “the living piss” taken out of her for owning at school, which she sees something of herself in. “I am a Skoda!” she declares triumphantly. “It does well enough and gets by, no matter what people say about it.”

Serge Pizzorno of Kasabian in Princes Street Gardens PIC: Calum Buchan

Music review: Kasabian, Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh

When your band has always been larger than life to the point of near self-parody, why not push it one step further and put your swaggering, dashingly bearded guitarist in a canary-yellow high-vis raincoat with the words “Shadow conceals, light reveals” emblazoned across the back? Meanwhile, your lead singer – looking like a middle-aged dad on his first night out with his mates in six months and moves like Mick Jagger in Performance – fades somewhat into the background, aside from a sassy, angry vocal that sounds as though he’s constantly on the verge of asking for a fight outside a kebab shop.

Yanis Varoufakis emphasised winning over the Right's voters. Picture: Edinburgh Book Festival

Edinburgh Book Festival: Our democracy is not what it once was

Economist Yanis Varoufakis, who served briefly as finance minister in the Greek government in 2015, is one of this year’s Guest Selectors at the Book Festival, programming four events on the theme of “Killing Democracy?” On Sunday evening, in an interview with Ruth Wishart, he offered his personal thoughts on its demise, and its possible resurrection.

Edinburgh festivals
Anna Crilly (Anderson) and West (Margaret Cabourn-Smith). Picture: Nobby Clark

Theatre review: The Half, Pleasance Courtyard

The Half is the half-hour call given to theatrical performers precisely 30 minutes before they’re due to take to the stage, and the two women spending it together here are Anderson and West, a once-successful British comedy double act who haven’t seen each other in a decade.

Edinburgh festivals
James Rowland is a consummate storyteller, natural and willing to expose himself. Picture: Contributed

Theatre review: Revelations, Summerhall

The spark for James Rowland’s new storytelling show was the invitation from his dear friends Sarah and Emma to be their sperm donor. Revelations follows the trajectory of that rich, strange and at times white-knuckle journey with much light and shade.

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