As a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hack Theatre's Michelle Sewell has created 'Unmute', a series of six fully accessible short films based around themes of equality, diversity and inclusion. Six individual artists, writers and performers discuss how they are finding new ways to work and champion marginalised voices in the aftermath of the virus.

Many of our readers will be familiar with Michelle's theatre work, in particular the show 'Border Control'. I spoke to her to find out more about 'Unmute' and Hack Theatre.

CLICK HERE to read this Caro Meets interview.

The 'Unmute' series of films is free to watch and one film a day will be launched from 20 Jul. Access the films, and more information about the artists involved, via the company website here. The artists will also take part in Twitter Q&As on the day their films are released, follow the company Twitter account here.
While the Edinburgh Festival may not be going ahead this year as a result of COVID-19, many Fringe performers, companies and venues will be presenting online shows during August, and we'll be previewing and covering them in our TW Weekly bulletin.

If you are a performer, company or venue who would normally be heading to Edinburgh this August, but who have online shows planned in place of the Fringe, make sure you let us know. We can't promise to preview everything, but we'll try our best to cover as much as possible. Send info about your projects to [email protected]

And look out for Edinburgh-themed interviews from next week and previews of Edinburgh-linked online shows the following Monday.

Meanwhile check out our tips for online shows happening this week - many also involving Edinburgh Fringe favourites...


Thanyia Moore | NextUp Comedy Festival | 25 Jul (pictured)
As you may well have noticed, the arts and culture community are responding to all the cancelled festivals with quite a lot of online and socially distanced stuff to replace all the shows there would have been. And as you definitely know - because we have been going on about it - NextUp Comedy have been at it since the start of July. It's in its final fortnight and this is our pick for the next few days: the excellently talented Thanyia Moore. Head this way for more info and to book.

Rich Kids: A History Of Shopping Malls In Tehran | Electric Dreams Online Festival | 27 Jul-14 Aug
Next we turn our attention to Electric Dreams Online, which will this week begin hosting loads of rather good sounding interactive, cyberspacy, theatrical, experiential and musical fare. Our first pick from the line up is 'Rich Kids' which starts on 27 Jul and you can read about that here. But there's other stuff starting earlier, from 24 Jul, so take a look here for a full guide to what's on.

My Darling Christopher | HOME Manchester's Homemakers Festival | 16 Jul
"Based on the true story of Clive, who, as a young boy at the outbreak of the Second World War, contracted Meningitis and lost both his sight and his hearing, 'My Darling Christopher' tells the shocking story of a war plane crashing to the ground meters away from Clive's classroom". This short film is online as part of HOME Manchester's Homemakers Festival, and you can find info on it here. Find out more about the full festival line up here.


Paul Ricketts: Not Live In London
Let's stick with the festival theme, shall we, and talk about some online stuff from acts we have discovered via the dear old Edinburgh Festival Fringe? I thought we would start with Paul Ricketts, who has - in lockdown - been posting regular videos to his 'Not Live In London' YouTube playlist, and there are six now for you to binge watch. He's a bit of a favourite with many of our team and I am going to quote one of them now, who a few years back said of one of his shows: "This is storytelling comedy with real heart; go hear his story". Click here.

Showstopper! The (Socially Distanced) Improvised Musical - Live Stream | 21 Jul (pictured)
Much loved edfringe veteran troupe The Showstoppers are very sad indeed to be unable to perform at the Festival this summer, after twelve consecutive years at the Fringe. But, after spending time during lockdown exploring all the possibilities of doing an online version, they have announced that this week they will live stream a show, entirely improvised, via the internet, using suggestions from viewers at home. For more info and to book yourself in, click this link here.

Joz Norris - You Build The Thing You Think You Are | 20-26 Jul
Like many many comedy acts, edfringe regular Joz Norris was planning to perform his newest show in the Scottish Capital this August, and was in fact ultra well prepared in advance. Which is probably why he's been able to completely reimagine and transform that new live show into a feature film, which will be running online for a week and will be followed by live Q&As with comedy types. It's described as "an absurdist storytelling show about how we construct ourselves", and you can book a ticket here.


Happy Birthday Rosalind Franklin! | Electric Voice Theatre | 25 Jul
If you don't know who Rosalind Franklin is, I will be very cross with you! If that's you, I expect you to Google her right now and find out all about her work. But, briefly, she was a great scientist who did groundbreaking stuff, and this Zoom event will explore her life and legacy. It's part of a wider strand - Minerva Scientifica - "an online feast of music, art and science by women" - which you can read more about here. And book your free ticket for the Rosalind Franklin event here.

How To Be A Failure And Still Live Well | Conway Hall | 26 Jul
It strikes me that there are many people living in our contemporary society who would judge themselves to be failures, even while keeping it together. Not least because, as the blurb here points out: "in consumer economies, success has increasingly been defined in terms of material attainment and the achievement of status". Beverley Clack of Oxford Brookes University explores this and what it means to "live well". See this page here for info and to book.

Vaclav Havel's 'The Garden Party' | Big Mind Theatre | 23-25 Jul (pictured)
Finally, some streaming theatre for you, and it sounds as though it will be rather good. Edinburgh-based Big Mind Theatre will perform Vaclav Havel's absurdist comedy 'The Garden Party', re-imagined for delivery via the Zoom platform, which promises to be a "thought-provoking reflection on online communication: its benefits and its shortcomings". See this page here for booking links, click through for more info.
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