In 2020 it was announced that the Edinburgh International Festival along with Edinburgh’s four other annual festivals would not take place for the first time in more than 70 years due to the increasing concerns surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.
Looking back on previous Opening Events
The 2019 Aberdeen Standard Investments Opening Event: LA Phil at Tynecastle kicked off the 2019 Festival in spectacular style. In a year that celebrated the 100th Birthday of the legendary Los Angeles Philharmonic. The orchestra were joined by superstar conductor Gustavo Dudamel – the driving force behind the LA Phil’s most passionate and energetic performances. Together they performed music from the best loved films of composer, John Williams, including Star Wars, ET, Jaws and Harry Potter. As well as a selection of music from the Golden Age of Hollywood.
2018 saw Edinburgh burst into life with the opening event, Five Telegrams, celebrating Scotland’s Year of Young People and reflecting the centenary of the end of the Great War. Inspired by telegrams sent by young soldiers in 1918, the event feature work from Scottish composer Anna Meredith and explored themes of communication, censorship, propaganda and reconciliation.
In 2017, the opening event, Bloom, marked the 70th anniversary of the Edinburgh International Festival. It celebrated how the Festival has transformed the city over the years by immersing the facades around St Andrew Square in colour, texture, sounds and sensations, with the audience right at the centre of the digital installation.
In 2016, the opening event Deep Time saw the western façade of Edinburgh Castle and Castle Rock used as the canvas for digitally animated projections inspired by the city’s past, set to a specially commissioned soundtrack by Scottish rock band Mogwai.www.eif.co.uk