A podcast about theatre and performance, based in Scotland.
Episode 35: Beltane Fire Festival, Part 4
In this final episode on Beltane Fire Festival I talk to Angus Farquhar and Margaret Bennett, participants in the first revivals in the 1980s. We talk about ritual, space, politics, Scottishness and folkoric traditions. I also chat with Callum Donald, performer and former event co-ordinator with Beltane Fire Society and finish up with a song from Daniel Tysen.
Episode 34: Beltane Fire Festival, Part 3
In this third episode on the Beltane Fire Festival I speak to Dr Neil Rhind about poetry, faeries, situationism, severed heads and tiny coffins. I also talk to Will, a performer with the festival, about his experiences as Green Man.
Episode 33: Beltane Fire Festival, Part 2
This episode of Stage Blether continues our four part series on the annual Beltane Fire Festival held in Edinburgh at the end of April. We speak to Alex, a performer who describes her experiences both in preparation and on the night itself, and with Kate, Rob and Rob, who talk more broadly about nature and conservation in relation to Beltane. The episode concludes with a reading of three poems by Neil Rhind in celebration of different aspects of the festival.
Episode 32: Beltane Fire Festival Part 1
The first of a four-part series featuring interviews, stories, poems and songs from members of the Beltane Fire Society (BFS).
Beltane Fire Festival, held annually at the end of April, celebrates the end of winter and the beginning of summer. Normally this involves a huge event on Edinburgh's Calton Hill with hundreds of performers and thousands of spectators. Such an event is not possible under the current Covid-19 restrictions and so members of BFS are involved in online or socially distanced activities to help celebrate in whatever way possible. Over the next four episodes, Stage Blether is hosting members of BFS as they recount their experiences of the festival.
This episode features a poem describing Beltane Fire Festival, a conversation between three of its volunteer organisers and a song written in Gaelic in honour of two of its members.
Episode 31: Ordinary Violence and The Last Of Us videogames
In a departure from my usual subjects, this episode analyses two video games - "The Last of Us" and "The Last of Us 2", both by Naughty Dog. The analysis discusses post-apocalyptic literature, 'ordinary violence' and revenge tragedy. Contains spoilers of both games.
Episode 30: A Brief History of Emergencies
This episode of Stage Blether offers a brief history of the phenomenon of the 'emergency'. It is recorded at the beginning of UK responses to the global pandemic caused by the Covid 19 virus, and also speaks to the peculiarities of the states of emergency and emergency measures that are being implemented in response to this pandemic.