It is a luxury to be able to immerse yourself in the breadth of culture and performance that is the Edinburgh International Festival, but it requires stamina.
The very best tip is to leave the organisation to someone else. However, since people like this can be hard to find, the next idea would be to arm yourself with the festival guide, call up the brilliantly logical and easy to use calendar on your tablet device and park yourself in the Hub café for a morning as you mark what you want to see and when.
Plan your schedule by starting with the one-offs, like Wagner’s epic opera Die Walküre for the 11am musical performances at the Queen’s Hall – well worth attending. And after those are ticked off dive into the programme and stretch yourself: dance, theatre, classical music and opera are all represented but in a many-layered variety of performance.
It’s worth remembering that it is 70 years since the first festival was established, in the bleak years after World War II when it was hard for many to envision a return to colour, laughter and cultural exchange. In this 70th year, more than 30 countries are represented at the Festival and the level of innovation, talent and dedication truly crosses all borders.
Take time to talk to the Festival staff at the Hub as they will already have the inside track on who’s new and ready to be discovered. And as you go about your Festival preparation there are weekly playlists to download, featuring music from this year’s performers. Spirit of 47, for example, features eight tracks from artists across the world, but who will all be part of ten days of performance and discussion.
And that’s the beauty of the Edinburgh International Festival. The world comes to Edinburgh in August and your tickets are a passport to the best it has to offer.