Luminate Festival 2017

Luminate Festival 2017 hosted 330 events across Scotland, with a significant growth in dementia-friendly activities and collaborations with care homes and day centres.

A woman is in a hospital bed, surrounded by other women talking and chatting

BED, Luminate Festival 2017

Photo: Viktoria Begg

Programme highlights:

  • Curious Shoes, a performance for people living with dementia and their loved ones. Created by theatre director Magdalena Schamberger, it tells the story of four curious characters and comes to life through live music, movement and very few words. 
  • Luminate Short Encounters, a curated collection of short documentaries and fictional tales from Scotland and around the world. They explored issues that affect us all as we age, from loneliness and grief to uplifting tales of new beginnings and unexpected joy. 
  • An introduction to monoprinting for older people from the Deaf community, led in BSL by Christine Hilditch in partnership with Deaf Action. 
  • Bed , a street theatre performance devised by Entelechy Arts’ Older People’s Drama Group, presented for the first time in Scotland in collaboration with Dundee Rep. 
  • A Brief Archaeology of Love, a series of short plays exploring love in contemporary Scotland, written by members of playwrights group Thrawn Craws who are committed to writing for older actors.

...a refreshing glimpse into an aspect of life which, along with the struggles of pensioners in general, is too often ignored by our society

Ariane Branigan, on Annus Mirabilis by Sylvia Dow, part of A Brief Archaeology of Love Wee Review
  • Dance Base’s Illuminations showcase, featuring a new work by iconic performer and director Lindsay Kemp, and also including performances of bespoke solos created by Scottish choreographers for members of over 60s company PRIME. 
  • Workshops led by renowned American choreographer, performer, writer and educator Liz Lerman, working with professional dance artists and older community dancers in Glasgow and Aberdeen. 
  • Runners, a creative collaboration with older people from the Chinese community in Edinburgh, reflecting the role that food plays in our lives – social, celebratory, nourishing.  Led by artist studio NADFLY and co-commissioned with MECOPP carers’ centre.   
  • Blanche & Butch by Robert Softley Gale, presented by Birds of Paradise Theatre Company.  Backstage in a mist of hairspray and sequins, Blanche and Butch reminisced about life as a troupe of disabled drag queens.  The final night of the tour was celebrated with an intergenerational cabaret featuring LGBTI+ and disabled performers of all ages.  

I encourage you all to try your hand at something new, to experience the focus, joy and challenge that taking part in culture and the arts brings

Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs