The Scotsman 23 January 2023

You never know quite where you are with Manipulate, and that is more the case than ever this year with Edinburgh’s annual festival of visual theatre. Where once this genre-stretching celebration was neatly contained in one place – initially at the Traverse, latterly at Summerhall – now, it is spreading its animated tentacles across the city. Still centred on Summerhall, the 2023 programme is also popping up in the Fruitmarket, the Festival Theatre’s Studio, the Traverse, the National Library Of Scotland, community venues in the Edinburgh West area and on the city streets.

“Our online festival in lockdown allowed us to reach new audiences geographically and I think we caught the bug,” says festival artistic director Dawn Taylor. “Now is an opportunity to reach people who didn’t realise visual theatre was for them.”

The decision to stretch out is partly pragmatic. Manipulate prides itself on variety. This year’s line-up embraces everything from puppetry to aerial performance to film. The more places to perform, the greater the range of work the festival has the capacity to present. [READ MORE]

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).