Arts going live

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The brilliant Paines Plough theatre group perform “one of the funniest plays you’ll ever see”; the Scottish Ensemble return to the region to bring audiences a taste of American Life; a Russian duo deliver a cabaret extravaganza; and the very best of the autumn season is celebrated in music, words and a walk in a brand new festival in Dalswinton.

These are some of the top quality events coming up for September as Dumfries and Galloway Arts Live continues its new touring project, bringing the best in live performance art to the region.

Kicking off the September programme, and coming to the region straight from the Edinburgh Fringe, Paines Plough bring their highly acclaimed production of Every Brilliant Thing: a touching and life-affirming play about depression and the lengths we will go to for those we love.

Produced by Duncan MacMillan, it stars the “phenomenally engaging” Jonny Donahoe as the son who makes a big list of brilliant reasons why his depressed mother should not commit suicide.

The production received outstanding praise wherever it appeared, since it premiered at the Ludlow Fringe Festival in 2013 and has both inspired and captivated audiences across the UK and America.

Every Brilliant Thing comes to the Theatre Royal, Dumfries, on Monday, 5 September.

On Saturday, 10 September, and after their highly successful residency during this year’s Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival, the Scottish Ensemble return to Dumfries’ Theatre Royal to bring their stunning performance of American Life: a concert of music representing the many shifting sounds and scenes of America. The programme includes music by Mark Stewart: To Whom It May Concern, Thank You; Philip Glass: Company; Nico Muhly: Motion; John Adams: Shaker Loops; Traditional Spirituals [arr. Manson]; and Copland: Appalachian Spring.

During the weekend of 16 to 18 September, the brand new Mellow Fruitfulness festival will celebrate autumn with music, words and a guided walk in and around the stunning Dalswinton Estate.

Presented by Kirkmahoe Concerts in association with Dalswinton Hall committee, the three-day festival will include free, unticketed talks and discussions on a number of autumnal themes as well as a walk through the magnificent Dalswinton Estate with owners Peter and Sarah Landale.

A series of concerts take place in Dalswinton Village Hall and the Barony Church and will feature the talents of popular folk musician Robin Williamson; Greg Lawson and Pete Garnett of Moishe’s Bagel; and a special performance by one of the world’s leading guitar and flute duos, Matthew McAllister and Aisling Agnew. There will also be a chance for the region’s musicians to showcase their talents in a free open mic café.

Wigtown Primary School is the venue for an unusual play on classroom bullying and how to overcome it. The Ballad of Pondlife McGurk will be presented by Catherine Wheels Theatre Company on 27 September as part of this year’s Wigtown Book Festival.

For tickets and information on all Dumfries and Galloway Arts Live events and for a list of forthcoming performances in the year-round programme, visit www.dgartslive.org.uk