Leithers One Family

The Scotsman 31 March 2021

When the Covid-19 pandemic struck in March 2020, many theatre companies could only shut up shop. Not so Citadel Arts Group. The Leith company, which is dedicated to staging the work of older playwrights, was in no mood to wait around. “Oh no, we didn’t consider stopping,” says co-founder Liz Hare. “Most of us are quite old; a year is precious.”

Turning to Zoom, Hare continued to work with her team of playwrights, simply switching their focus from stage to audio. The first fruits of that policy are already there to hear on the company website. They include a three-part version of Susan Chaney’s Beyond The Ash Tide, which had been scheduled for the cancelled Leith Festival, as well as plays embracing everything from maritime research to neurotic crows.

“There was never any question of being silenced,” says Hare. “As older people, we are the ones who have been worst hit by Covid and we were determined we were going to be up and running as quickly as we could by going online. We’ve never been busier.” [CONTINUE READING]

By Mark Fisher

MARK FISHER is a freelance theatre critic and feature writer based in Edinburgh and has written about theatre in Scotland since the late-1980s. He is a theatre critic for The Guardian, a former editor of The List magazine and a frequent contributor to the Scotsman and other publications. He is the co-editor of the play anthology Made in Scotland (1995), and the author of The Edinburgh Fringe Survival Guide (2012) and How to Write About Theatre (2015) – all Bloomsbury Methuen Drama. He is also the editor of The XTC Bumper Book of Fun for Boys and Girls and What Do You Call That Noise? An XTC Discovery Book (both Mark Fisher Ltd).