Beginning as a piece of street theatre in 2005, 'Potted Potter', condensing all seven of the Harry Potter books into just seventy minutes, arrived as a full show at the Fringe in 2006, and soon became a hit show for kids, adults and Potter fans everywhere. Created and performed by Dan Clarkson and Jeff Turner, the Edinburgh run was quickly followed by a UK tour, with the show later going global, with a second cast required as Dan and Jeff fitted the performances around their work for CBBC.

Returning to the Edinburgh Festival in the following years, 'Potted Potter' soon became something of a Fringe institution, ensuring an eager audience awaiting as spin-off shows 'Potted Pirates' and 'Potted Panto' arrived. And, we're sure, for the latest new show too, 'Potted Sherlock', which will condense all 60 of the famous detective stories into one new Fringe show. Ahead of that we spoke to Clarkson about the Potted shows, condensing Sherlock, and putting on hats. Click here to read the interview.
The founder of the Edinburgh-based Song, By Toad record label and music blog, Matthew Young, has announced that the Pale Imitation Festival will return to this August, running a series of reasonably priced gigs during the Fringe.

Launched last year, Pale Imitation will again showcase some of Scotland's finest independent musical talent at Henry's Cellar Bar, plus there will be one show - Mersault's farewell gig - at the Queen's Hall. That show will cost £12, but all the others will be priced at £5, with £25 buying you a pass to all ten shows at Henry's Cellar Bar. Which is pretty good value we think.

Explaining the thinking behind Pale Imitation, Young previously told ThreeWeeks: "I like the Edinburgh Festival, I really do. Or at least I try. There's lots of awesome stuff happening, but there is also a massive, stifling avalanche of over-priced, imported rubbish which smothers everything in the city and dominates the press and makes it almost impossible to do anything at all in music except sit back for six weeks and wait for it to be over. And being a bloody-minded little shit, I don't accept that".

You can read more from Matthew in this interview he did ahead of the first Pale Imitation last year. And here's the full line-up of shows coming to Edinburgh this August:

2 Aug: Adam Stafford, Le Thug & Duchess
7 Aug: The Leg, Now Wakes The Sea & one more TBC
9 Aug: The Yawns, Sharptooth & alansmithee
13 Aug: Meursault & Plastic Animals: Queen's Hall
14 Aug: Deathcats, Garden Of Elks & Passion Pusher
16 Aug: Jonnie Common, Jesus H. Foxx & Andrew R. Burns
21 Aug: Rick Redbeard, Siobhan Wilson (Ella The Bird) & Kitchen Cynics
23 Aug: LAW, Numbers Are Futile & Wozniak
28 Aug: eagleowl, Ian Humberstone & Smackvan
30 Aug: PAWS, Halfrican & Et Tu Brute!!!

More at songbytoad.com/2014/07/pale-imitation-festival-2014
Every year the Fringe boasts a large number of Shakespeare-related plays. Some are your standard stagings, others are adaptations, others still are inspired by rather than based on one of the Bard's greatest works. ThreeWeeks Co-Editor Caro especially likes the ones that shake things up a bit, and here she recommends three that she thinks sound a bit all right.

Seussification Of A Midsummer Night's Dream
Well, I wasn't going to see a title like that in the Fringe Programme and breezily thumb past it, was I? I have a child who loves Dr Seuss, after all. And I love it when people irreverently muck around with things that everyone considers sacrosanct... so over to the show's Fringe blurb, which I really can't improve on: "As comedies go, Midsummer's the greatest! Except that the language Will used ain't the latest. Shaky used old words like: Thee, Thou and Thine. It's hard to process that much old at one time. So we ran the script through the Script Squash Two-Fifty. It's a machine that makes old scripts more nifty. It tightens the plot, which is kinda gigantic. The whole play rhymes now and is much less iambic!" Suitable for you and your kids. If they are 6 or above.
TheSpace on North Bridge, from 1 Aug until 9 Aug. Tickets here.

MacBheatha (pictured)

This sounds like it will be brilliant, and it's such an apt way to adapt this particular work; what better way to add a dimension to The Scottish Play than to translate it into Gaelic? It's a two hander, focusing on the tense relationship between MacBheatha and his wife, and won praise from Scotsman critic Joyce McMillan when it was performed at Glasgow's Citizen's theatre late last year. "It offers a fierce insight into the relationship at the centre of one of the world's greatest plays", she wrote, "as well as a reminder that like any other language charged with history and poetry, Gaelic brings its own energy to this great text, along with a profound and thrilling sense of connection to the mediaeval Scotland in which this most famous of stories is set". Sounds good, huh? And it's suitable for non-Gaelic speakers too, so don't be put off, Sassenachs.
Summerhall, from 11 Aug until 24 Aug. Tickets here.

Hamlet Private Eye

Every year at the Fringe there's one particular Shakespeare play that has an especially high profile and this year it appears to be 'Hamlet'; there are loads of productions of it, and shows based on it. I've seen quite a lot of Hamlets this lifetime, though, so I thought I'd go for something completely different, this one, which appears to take the concept and make it into an apparently humorous piece combining the trappings of film noir with, er, slapstick comedy. Looking forward to seeing if the concept works...
theSpace on North Bridge, from 4 Aug until 9 Aug. Tickets here.
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