Duns Play Fest was best ever

Festival director John McEwen.Festival director John McEwen.
Festival director John McEwen.
Organisers of DunsPlayFest, Berwickshire’s festival of new drama and performing arts, say it has enjoyed its most successful year ever, with audiences at record levels.

“The festival seems to be filling a big demand for local entertainment, while showcasing some of the Borders’ best writing and performing talent,” said DunsPlayFest director, John McEwen.

“There was standing room only for our folk and jazz performers, Stig and Suzi Swing, while more than 200 adults and children enjoyed our free, outdoor Family Day at Duns Castle (courtesy of Marchmont Makers Foundation), with stilt walkers, woodland characters, acrobats, magicians and fortune tellers.

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"We also had packed audiences for our history plays such as HotTrod Theatre Company’s Wandering Willie’s Tale, which is an outstanding touring production.”

Other gigs at the festival included Tideline Runners’ The Smallest Story and the comedy Still Nothing Ever Happens in Duns, play readings, drama workshops, free recitals of jazz, folk, reggae and classic-romantic music, a sensory sound workshop for groups with differing needs, a one-hour ‘Sound Bath’ and a Sing for Wellbeing workshop.

The festival, which has doubled in size over the past 12 months to total more than 60 different shows, finished with a free screening of the King’s Coronation on Saturday, May 6, and a complimentary glass of bubbly, followed by the popular big-band closing concert and ceilidh.