The Culture Show at the Edinburgh Festival - Part 2 The Culture Show


The Culture Show at the Edinburgh Festival - Part 2

Sue Perkins presents highlights from 2011's Edinburgh Festival. Clemency Burton-Hill takes a look at multi-media theatre production The Wind Up Bird Chronicle.


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Welcome to the Culture Show at the Edinburgh Festival. I am talking

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quietly because I have chanced upon this rare beast, the cabaret artist

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in its natural habitat, although it's usually a very nocturnal and

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thirsty creature. Stay tuned for the best in art, charity and dance.

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I'm going to leave now because I Coming up: a sneak preview of the

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Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, clemency Burton Hill finds out how to turn a

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cult novel into spectacular theatre. David Sidaris tells me how to turn

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little moments into big laughs and New York double act Craig and

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Kirstin drop into the room with us too, also, Ian Rankin talks with

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gallery director Sandy. Our first- timer at the festival explores the

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Edinburgh Fringe. We will bring you the best movers and shakers in town.

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First up, like me, David grew up believing the whole world wanted to

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hear what he had to say, unlike me, he was right. Subsequently, he's

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gone on to sell 14 million books worldwide. His unique brand of

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self-deprecating work takes such topics as business flights and flat

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lent grannies. I was lucky enough to meet him. When my wife and I

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first moved to North Carolina we lived three blocks from the school

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I would begin the third grade. My mother made friends of the

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neighbours, but one seemed enough for her. Within a year, we moved

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again. As she explained, there wasn't much point in getting too

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close to people we would have to say goodbye to. We have decided to

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do this interview in a dissection room in honour of the time I think

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you spent in a mortuary. Was there a reason or was it just - I was

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living in New York. A magazine called. They asked me if I wanted

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to write for them. They said I could do whatever I wanted. I

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always wanted to see a lot of dead people. You can't just walk in.

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This magazine would get me in. guess the most famous job you had

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was you started off as a department store elf. I can see that. I am

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small, and I am merry, so they hired me. They're the two CV points

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you would look for in an elf almost exclusively, you would think.

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Exactly. That's all you need. wear a Zhangly hat with a bell on

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it. Well, I had an outfit, and I did it for two years. Was this a

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financial necessity? Was there part of you that thought, I'm home now

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is I'm with my people? LAUGHTER

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I'm going to stay in elf-land forever? That's great. No-one loves

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Christmas more than me, but I didn't actually feel like -

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(Laughs) I'm home. You're constantly writing a diary through

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all of this point. This is something - you don't know that

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fame or success are coming. You're doing it because you need to write.

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Writing is a compulsion at this point in your life? I think so. You

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know, I started writing when I turned 20. I think I just exhausted

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every other way of trying to get attention. I tried being an artist,

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a horrible artist. I tried being an actor, and the second I got on

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stage, all of my nervous tics came back. This is just next on the list.

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But now performance is such a large part of your work. A lot of your

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time is spent performing your own - readings of your own writing.

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but I like that. That's as far as I'm willing to go. Like, I would

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not want to... You wouldn't do it in a wig? Wouldn't put a wig on, a

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little outfit, jazz it up a bit? I wouldn't. I wouldn't want to

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memorise anything because that changes everything as well. If I'm

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in an audience, I don't want that person on stage looking at me

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because I know you're like this - because I want to be polite and I

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want to look like I'm entertaining myself, like I'm prepared to laugh

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at any moment, so I like it to be dark so I can't see them, so they

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don't have to worry that I'm going to look at them. All I do is read.

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I'm not selling myself. I read read, and every now and then I'll look up.

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I was in my early 20s when a Chinese restaurant opened in

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Raleigh. It was in a new building designed to look vaguely templeish,

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and my mother couldn't get enough of it. "What do yousai we go

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oriental?" I think she liked that the food was beyond her range.

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Anyone could imitate the twice- baked potatoes at the Peddler or

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turn out a veal Parmesan at one restaurant, but there was no way a

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non-Chinese person could make mushu pork. I always got my order to

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order for me but when the kung pao chicken was ordered for me I never

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perked up the way I did at the steakhouse. It wasn't just

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Raleigh's Chinese food. I was also disinterested in Chicago or New

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York. Everyone swore that the food in Beijing would be different from

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what I'd had in the US. "It's more real," is what they said, meaning

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that it turned out that I could dislike it more authentically.

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of the great stuff you do is connected to stories about your

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family. One of my favourite one is you and your partner Hugh going to

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watch I think it is The End of the Affair as the bombs are falling and

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the totally different reaction you had to the same experience. Hugh is

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a good - it's interesting to think of the person that you have been

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with for the last 20 years as a character, but the character of him

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is good just because he is the - such a consistent straight man, so

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he's always good to... So he's the foil, the kind of... Yeah. "He

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sobbed from beginning to end, and by the time we left the theatre, he

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was completely dehydrated. I asked if he always cried during comedies,

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and he accused me of being grossly insensitive, charge I am trying to

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plea bargain down to a simple obnoxious."

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My family - it's all stuff that they think is funny because often

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people say, oh, how can they ever forgive you after - I think, what

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do you think I have said about them that's so revealed? Like, I have

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never revealed any of their secrets. I think maybe it gives the illusion

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of doing that but it hasn't really, so I'll say to somebody, like,

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"What do you really know about my sister?" "She has a parrot."

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Like, yeah, she has a parrot. That's what you know! I mean, you

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think you know all of these things. I know she did something awful in a

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picnic area. Did I talk about that? I didn't write about that, though,

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did I? You alluded to it, so now that stays with me now. It was -

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what could it be? There are several obvious contenders, but I have sort

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of over time gone, oh, no, actually, there's quite a wide variety of

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things that you could do in a picnic area that would be appalling,

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you know? So finally, you've obviously moved

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to Paris, and now you're in England. Yes. England has got you for awhile,

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which I am delighted about. What is it about England that suddenly

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caught your fancy now? Well, I was living in Paris, and I started

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coming here for - to do things for the BBC, and I think I came for the

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first time, I don't know, maybe ten years ago, and I thought, it's open

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on Sunday, because Paris is completely closed on Sunday, and

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that was enough for me. Just the sake of the democracy was enough...

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That was enough! But I don't think people understand either - how

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difficult it is to get your papers to be able to live in another

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country, so I have indefinite leave to remain now in the UK. Do you?

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Uh-huh. I had to take a test. you do the citizen - tell me you

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took the citizens... I did. Apparently it's the hardest thing

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in the world. Somebody told me two or three questions. I have no idea

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of the order of the Kings and Queens. What year did women get the

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right to divorce their husbands? What year did they get the right to

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vote? 1931. How old do you have to be to deliver milk in the United

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Kingdom? There is a legal age... Try when you're 13. That's all I am

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saying. Thank you very much for talking to me, David. Well, thank

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you. And he will be tickling audiences

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at the international Conference Centre until Saturday. It's still a

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no, I am afraid. Sorry. Visitors to the vest value could be forgiven

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thinking it's all about comedy and theatre. Indeed, those two art

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forms intend to prevail. It's definitely getting there. But

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dancers are all over the shop. Choreographers are fighting to find

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brand new audiences. We sent our double act to hunt down the best of

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them. This is your last chance. It's great Buckingham Palace,

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Saturday, 9.00pm. These days, we're known for our

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riotous and art-fuelled comedy, but there was a time in the not-too-

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distant past when we could be found dabbling in the dark arts of

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contemporary dance. And while there are thousands of sho shows to see

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at the festival this year we still see dance as the beating heart...

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And sweaty crotch... Of the festival. I have always wanted to

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say "sweaty crotch" on the Culture Show. Dance is an often

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misunderstood form, whose meaning can sometimes seem impenetrable.

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But we've noticed this year choreographers making real efforts

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to reach out to audiences, proving that dance isn't just for arty

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One small personal story with huge universal appeal is Swimming with

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My Mother, conceived and performed by David Bolger and his real-life

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mother Imagine. I wondered if you could tell us

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maybe a little bit about what inspired you to make a show about

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your mother, but also about swimming and how those two ideas

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connected. It was because my mother had put me into the water before I

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could really walk and with a bicycle tube around my waist, and I

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thought I wanted to do something on that and how maybe my life didn't

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stay in the swimming, but it went into dancing, and then I got a bit

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scared, and I thought, do you know what I'll do? I'll put my mother on

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stage with me, so I would have that And the sea scares me, actually. I

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get quite scared in the sea. I'd love it, but it scares me. I get

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scared of what's in it. It's really strange. I get sometimes very

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panicky about fish or, you know, just - I suppose because I feel

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like I'm in their world, and I - The characters in the piece move

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around in time, so we see you as a young boy and you as a young lady,

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and we move around, and the text helps us do that. The text is

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recorded and played to us as a voice-over. The way the text would

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- was going to work was to use it as a score for the pieces and to

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allow that to accompany the movement, but for us to be able to

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swim through that score, swim through the words and the story.

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The text is the water. I suppose something that had an ebb and flow

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to it and a theme and different subject matters that correlate to

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Another dance piece making ways at the Fringe tackles darker and more

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abstract concepts of memory. Forgetting Natasha layers flux and

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imagery to explore one woman's dementia.

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It actually started with me thinking about memories and how

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memories make us who we are, how they affect us on a daily basis,

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you know, without all of these memories, who would you be? How

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would you exist? This is where my personal experience of my grandpa,

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who unfortunately did suffer from dementia, and how he forgot how to

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make a cup of tea to him forgetting who my mum was and, you know,

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eventually, really, just completely forgetting himself. I don't

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remember people's names, but I remember being on a train not

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Covering my school books with wrapping paper, walking in the rain,

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the bell ringing and always arriving late for my music lessons.

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What we see is some projected images on screen and some

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incredibly complex production. Can you tell us about how you arrived

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at the multimedia? This idea of the memories that we keep them in like

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boxes - they're made up of hundreds of boxs that we open and close, and

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they come out sometimes, and some days they maybe weigh very heavy on

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you, and some days they lift you up - that's the idea of where all of

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these boxes came from. I don't remember your face anymore. But I

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I remember you. I will always remember you. They are using all

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these different tools such as the poetry, the speaking, the visual

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elements, the dancing, all coming together. When I make a piece of

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work, I am trying to communicate, so I hope that, through using these

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different mediums, it does make the work accessible. Even more

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emotionally resonant is Falling Man, a piece inspired by Richard Drew's

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iconic and controversial photograph from 9/11. This show explore as

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painful moment in our collective history through a powerful fusion

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of movement and text. For more than an hour and a half they streamed

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through the building one after another. And they were all very

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much obviously very much alive on their way down. I was really

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nervous about making the piece, thinking would I do something would

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do it justice? As somebody that didn't live through that, whether I

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could make a comment on that. It is something we all experienced, one

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of those days that we all remember, and we all have a resonance with it.

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They were culled jumpers or the jumpers, as if to represent some

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new lemming-like class. It places new the position of trying to

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consider a human being's predicament in that situation. Yes

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it's got this big context but at the heart of it it is about this

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one man, who is having to make a decision. Yeah, that's what it was

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about for us, the humanity of it. If you were in this situation, what

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would you do? Now, the falling man is falling through much more than

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blank, blue sky. He's falling through the vast spaces of memory.

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And picking up speed. Is it a dance piece? Is it a theatre piece?

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think it is somewhere middle. I think it is dance theatre, yeah. It

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very much has its roots in dance and movement, but yeah, it needs

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the text and it needs something to give it context. I wonder if you

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have a sense of what dance or dance theatre can do that maybe strikes

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that it can't do? It adds something on an emotional level. I think it

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offers something that is more subtle and allows the audience to

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reflect more rather than be told That's three pieces here at the

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Fringe that tell us powerful, complex and deeply human stories.

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For us, that's what dance theatre does best.

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There'll be more dance from the international festival next week.

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Now to one of the highlights of this year's Edinburgh Art Festival.

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The Tony Cragg is one of the world's greatest sculptors, using

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natural and synthetic materials to create beautiful objects that defy

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categorisation. Alastair Sooke went to meet him at the gallery of

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modern art, where he had put the final touches to his first show in

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over a decade. Back in the 1980s a group came

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together. They included Anish Kapoor and others. This year the

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Scottish gallery of modern art is celebrating a member of the group

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who hasn't penetrated the public's consciousness in the same way, a

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star of British sculptor who sadly has been overlooked in his homeland,

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Tony cafplgt Crag's early sculptors used found

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plastic objects. With his work in demand in galleries round the world

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he was one of Britain's brightest artistic talents. The winner of the

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Turner Prize in 1998 is Tony Cragg. Even though he won the Turner Prize

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and represented Britain in 1988, Tony Cragg is still a bit

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unfamiliar to lots of people. In part because since 1977 he's lived

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in Germany, where he has a studio in a former tank factory. But this

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new exhibition in Edinburgh of nearly 50 recent sculptures offer

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as remind they are Cragg's career didn't ossify after his peak in

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1980. He deserves to be celebrated. And this is the first time that

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many of these stunning works have been shown here in the UK. I met up

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with the artest for a tour of the final installation. This isn't the

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first room in the show, but I thought it might be a good place to

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start. Partly because, this is a piece called Under The Skin and it

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reminds me of some of the work from earlier in your career where you

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used found objects. You can see this is a chair, this is a table

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and it is covered in hooks. Sculpture is very much about

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reading a surface. How should we read this one? That's what we have

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to find out. The surface we are seeing is indicative of energy

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states. Just doing this, this is an enormous amount of energy to this

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in. This is a lot of work. They are curly forces off the surface and

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they stick on the to each other, like Velcro. This attachment, this

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potential to kind of attach you. This stickiness about it I think is,

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it excited me. That's why I made the work. Tell me about this piece.

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It is called Hedge? Yes. This is part of a new group of works. It is

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just the idea of in England you've got fields, monocultures of nothing,

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in the middle between each field is a wide hedge. I and my brothers, we

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used to love to be in these hedges. It was like a paradicic world, if

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you like. I want to build something that has the buzz of a metropolis

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but it is one of the hedge, if you like. I think the hedge idea is

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really very beautiful. It is also people think of sculpture as solid

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and traditionally full of mass, and this is, you can go in and around

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it. Yes, that's right. Sometimes you only want the aroma of

:21:29.:21:39.
:21:39.:21:40.

something. This bright yellow piece, what are we looking at? We are

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looking at are some commercial vessels. What, plastic? Originally.

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The things I drew originally... If you come round this side, can I

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show you. This here is a detergentle, a shampoo bottle.

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you've extended it. This is a Domestos bottle. It is very

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interesting the parallel with the first room, because I can see you

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are taking something which, to use your words, is quite banal, an

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everyday thing, a table chair, and transforming it into something

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magnificent, different, very unexpected. At the moment you were

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not bound by utilitarianism, the vocabulary of form is free for you.

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You don't have to be practical and economic with it. Suddenly things

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start to happen. The thing grows up into space and becomes something

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that you noble else has ever seen before and you have to struggle

:22:36.:22:46.
:22:46.:22:47.

with it. -- nobody else. To a lot of people it is

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objectionable to see sculpture, because they don't know what it is

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for. "What is it for?" It's for nothing. It is just because it

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gives you new ideas, new emotions, new language or something. What is

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this piece called? Red Figure. is part of the Rational Being

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series, is it? It is, yes. strikes me that in all of these

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series you are playing with futurism. Future Rix, no, future

:23:19.:23:22.

Rix wanted to have the illusion of movement. I don't think that's what

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I want. I want energy. Even though it is on about it have any energy,

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you are creating the illusion. course it has energy. Only because

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you've imbued it as a sculpture. no. Something sticks out like this

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with amazing energy. That's real strength. That's real power to keep

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that volume out there. That is energy. I'm probably being dumb.

:23:45.:23:49.

Energy sort of implies motion to me. I suppose this has an illusion that

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we've seen something that's freeze- framed and almost like a piece of

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smoke, or material smoke, is about to shift before our eyes. No, I can

:23:58.:24:03.

understand why you say that but I see it differently. The thing about

:24:03.:24:08.

sculpture, when people say statue, static. They have the idea of

:24:08.:24:15.

stasis, of ridge itity of a frozen moment. The history of sculpture in

:24:15.:24:22.

the last 100 years is fantastically dynamic, evolving, developing. You

:24:22.:24:30.

should never see the material as being something static.

:24:30.:24:34.

formidable Mr Cragg has lost none of his energy. The exhibition is a

:24:34.:24:40.

timely reminder of his importance, but di wonder if, from his studio

:24:40.:24:46.

in Germany, he ever felt overshadowed by the media stars of

:24:46.:24:50.

British sculpture. I think anybody that makes sculpture is heroic and

:24:50.:24:55.

interesting. I'm a real sculpture enthuse yavements I think there are

:24:55.:25:00.

lots of really great sculptors around. But I'm competitive in

:25:00.:25:04.

myself and especially in what I'm trying to do for myself. I'm not

:25:04.:25:07.

really scerpbd about other people's opinion too much, to be frank. They

:25:07.:25:16.

want to make something better, they should get on with it. You can see

:25:16.:25:19.

Tony Cragg's sculptures until November 6th.

:25:19.:25:29.
:25:29.:25:30.

Now Governor, cor blimey, strike a light, would you Adam and EVe it,

:25:30.:25:36.

have a banana. If you don't care about the song, you are hard

:25:36.:25:46.
:25:46.:26:03.

# Remember the comedy song # Musically weak and the joke's not

:26:03.:26:07.

that strong # Makes me think of bad school

:26:07.:26:10.

reviews # Deluded prep school kids

:26:10.:26:15.

# So far from cool # Playing the fool

:26:15.:26:25.
:26:25.:26:25.

# Synthetic shirt from Next # Was it as embarrassing as we

:26:25.:26:28.

remember # # Golf is a wonderful, a wonderful

:26:28.:26:31.

sport # You really ought to try it

:26:31.:26:35.

# Every ought. It will keep you happy and enjoying life

:26:35.:26:40.

# But it keeps you away from the wife #

:26:40.:26:44.

# God can you imagine how his kids must feel? I would have bullied

:26:44.:26:49.

them if I was at their school # Caning never worked

:26:49.:26:59.

# Can it be right # Can comedy songs ever be cool #

:26:59.:27:09.
:27:09.:27:12.

# It's easy to think they can't because of a bunch of comedians not

:27:12.:27:16.

helping the cause # The things that you hear on Radio

:27:16.:27:22.

# The same three people and the same three chords

:27:22.:27:27.

# But don't panic # Because there's a new breed of

:27:27.:27:30.

musical missionary # With genuine skill

:27:30.:27:35.

# Not just a rhyming dictionary # And actual jokes not snide

:27:35.:27:39.

remarks # Production values not acoustic

:27:39.:27:45.

git ars # Mascara

:27:45.:27:51.

# High-heeled boots # Not grey-haired men in grey-

:27:51.:27:54.

coloured suits. # # You see there is hope

:27:54.:28:00.

# Gotta make sure you've got a few things up your sleeve

:28:00.:28:05.

# You gotta look good you gotta be funny

:28:05.:28:12.

# You gotta sing right # Throw a few moves in there too

:28:12.:28:16.

# You've got ta have attitude # And maybe advice

:28:16.:28:22.

# I think you just described Rihanna

:28:22.:28:27.

# Is Rihanna comedy # No, no, no, no, no

:28:27.:28:36.

Um, I usually don't have much trouble.

:28:36.:28:42.

# Call me rude, boy, boy - is it big enough? #

:28:42.:28:47.

You're kind of scaring me. Can we not just cuddle?

:28:47.:28:53.

# We need expert help # # Let's sing a comedy song

:28:53.:28:58.

# We have four chords # Can't go wrong.

:28:58.:29:01.

# Make it sexual # Or people will think you're a -

:29:01.:29:03.

# Say the punch line at the end of the line

:29:03.:29:06.

# Or if you want them to try # Go into a miner

:29:06.:29:10.

# If it's topical, sing about your internet provider

:29:10.:29:18.

# Or just smile, smile, smile - huh # Let's sing a comedy ditty. We're

:29:18.:29:23.

in Edinburgh, the cultural city # Make sure there is a story as

:29:23.:29:26.

well as ha, has # If you want to get five

:29:26.:29:36.
:29:36.:29:41.

# If you want to get a five stars # So believe in the relevance of

:29:41.:29:45.

humorous songs # Keep faith

:29:45.:29:51.

# And open your eyes # Look around you

:29:51.:29:59.

# There's so much to see out there # From rockin' Australians

:29:59.:30:04.

# To DJs with facial hair # There are loads of things

:30:04.:30:06.

# That would be awful if you said them

:30:06.:30:09.

# But when we sing them, they're funny

:30:09.:30:16.

# And that's the way this works # So leave it to the people

:30:16.:30:23.

# Who are beautiful and talented # Who won't fall back on hazy

:30:23.:30:26.

# Rhymes involving cheese # Leave it to the people

:30:26.:30:31.

# Who DO have grade five theory # And at least four stars from a

:30:31.:30:33.

critic # And please -

:30:33.:30:43.
:30:43.:30:44.

# Don't stop believin' # Hold on to that feeling

:30:44.:30:48.

# Streetlights # Keep us

:30:48.:30:58.
:30:58.:31:14.

# Don't stop believin' old? Hold on to that feeling

:31:15.:31:17.

# Streetlights, people # Oh!

:31:17.:31:26.

# Don't stop! # And frisky and Mannache won't stop

:31:26.:31:32.

believing until August 28th when they'll have to contractually leave,

:31:32.:31:36.

but they will be touring in October. Now - in the streets of Edinburgh,

:31:36.:31:41.

the writings of Ricky can be strange and downright surreal. His

:31:41.:31:47.

novel, the Windup Chronicle has been developed into a play.

:31:47.:31:51.

Clemency Burton-Hill went to New York to check out the rehearsals in

:31:51.:31:56.

advance of its Premier in Edinburgh later this week. You should hear

:31:56.:32:06.
:32:06.:32:08.

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is a detective story set against the

:32:08.:32:15.

secret world of life in suburban Tokyo. Her eightth novel is a bend

:32:15.:32:23.

of sci-fi, noire and post modern realism. Nurakami is a truly

:32:23.:32:27.

literalrary voice. They're truly ambitious literary works

:32:27.:32:31.

intertwined with the surreal and hyperreal leaving the reader with

:32:31.:32:36.

an unforgotten set of images emblazoned across the mind but not

:32:36.:32:38.

necessarily ones that'll easily be translated from the page to the

:32:38.:32:43.

stage. This production evokes the same dream-like imagery as the

:32:44.:32:48.

novel, using film, puppetry, dance and performance techniques to

:32:48.:32:53.

explore the complex world of the modern Japanese psyche. Few

:32:53.:32:57.

directors would be bold or perhaps crazy enough to attempt to bring a

:32:57.:33:02.

novel as complex as the Wind-Up Bird Chronicle to the stage. But

:33:02.:33:08.

Steven Earnhearth hart with his background in film and music videos

:33:08.:33:12.

is perhaps the perfect man. What drew you to this work and the Wind-

:33:12.:33:15.

Up Bird Chronicle in particular? When I read The Wind-Up Bird

:33:15.:33:18.

Chronicle, for me, it was a chance to envision a project that was

:33:18.:33:23.

going to take all of the things that I was really passionate about,

:33:23.:33:27.

which is live performance and cinema, even sound and do something

:33:27.:33:32.

that I had never done before, which was create something that I called

:33:32.:33:35.

living cinema, so to take all the things I loved about film and all

:33:35.:33:40.

the things I loved about live performance and put them into one

:33:40.:33:45.

single project. There is a moment in the book when the protagonist,

:33:45.:33:51.

Toru Okada, says the one thing I understood for sure is I didn't

:33:51.:33:54.

understand anything. That could speak for all the readers. How did

:33:54.:33:59.

you begin to adapt the book into a two-hour stage play without leaving

:33:59.:34:04.

the audience baffled. It. Certainly wasn't easy. I felt a lot like the

:34:04.:34:07.

main character, groping through the darkness to find the answers. At

:34:08.:34:11.

the anchor of all of this was the story of a man who had lived with a

:34:12.:34:16.

woman for six years and ultimately had this feeling he had know idea

:34:16.:34:20.

he knew who she was. The play centres around Toru Okada, an

:34:20.:34:24.

everyday man whose life takes a bizarre turn with the disappearance

:34:24.:34:29.

of his wife and later his cat. was the last time you saw her?

:34:29.:34:33.

days ago. I zipped up her dress, kissed her goodbye and haven't

:34:33.:34:38.

heard from her since no, notes, no calls, nothing. Four days? Did you

:34:38.:34:43.

call the police, the hospitals, her family? No. Well, what the hell

:34:43.:34:51.

have you been doing? Laundry. During his quest to find his wife

:34:51.:34:55.

and the cat, he's visited by a succession of characters, each one

:34:55.:34:59.

stranger than the last. It was a pleasure meeting you today, Toru

:35:00.:35:03.

Okada. This curious cast of characters includes a ghostly war

:35:03.:35:09.

veteran, a prostitute of the mind and, of course, that wind-up bird.

:35:09.:35:14.

I have never seen it, but I hear it all the time. It sounds like

:35:14.:35:18.

someone's winding the clock. My wife and I decided it's the bird

:35:18.:35:23.

that winds the spring of the universe. We named it the wind-up

:35:23.:35:32.

bird. So what happens when the bird stops winding? In 2004, Earnhart

:35:32.:35:37.

travelled to Japan to secure the rights to the novel. One of the

:35:37.:35:40.

things I really came away with from my time in Japan was this tension

:35:40.:35:47.

between the outward expression of Japanese people and the inner life.

:35:47.:35:49.

We in New York tend to express everything, you know, and we talk

:35:49.:35:55.

and talk and talk and talk, but there was a certain quietness and

:35:55.:36:04.

introspection in Japan that really intrigued me. What I felt that -

:36:04.:36:08.

Morikami's book was really getting at was that internal journal that

:36:09.:36:12.

Toru Okada, the main character, was going through, and so much of this

:36:12.:36:16.

was happening in his psyche and in his mind, and I wanted to represent

:36:16.:36:21.

that in a way that felt very Japanese to me, that it wasn't so

:36:21.:36:27.

much about using dialogue and using this long monologues and expression,

:36:27.:36:32.

it was more about, how can I possibly use all of these elements

:36:32.:36:37.

at my disposal to accurately portray this very internal journey

:36:37.:36:40.

that he's going through? You have been down there all day. Aren't you

:36:40.:36:47.

getting hungry? I have a sandwich in my backpack. How are you

:36:47.:36:54.

planning to get out of there? way I came down. And how did the

:36:54.:36:58.

author react when you told him this is what you were going to do?

:36:58.:37:01.

thought he would be very interested in having the play be originated

:37:01.:37:05.

and developed in jan, and it was the opposite. He said, "No, I want

:37:05.:37:10.

you to do it in America." I think he was intrigued about the

:37:10.:37:15.

uniqueness of what I was trying to do. It wasn't an ordinary

:37:15.:37:18.

adaptation. I think he was interested in the collision between

:37:18.:37:27.

Eastern and Western culture. (Speaking in Japanese)

:37:27.:37:33.

He has a Huge audience in the UK, kind of a cult readership, if you

:37:33.:37:37.

like. Hue do you think it had will go down in Edinburgh? It has always

:37:37.:37:41.

been this blessing and this curse of having this amazing book hanging

:37:41.:37:46.

over me with all of this immense amount of unbelievably beautiful

:37:46.:37:50.

material but feeling this pressure to make something that is as

:37:50.:37:54.

truthful and feels as good as that, so I'm hoping that people feel that

:37:54.:37:59.

we did do something that represents the book well but also gave it a

:37:59.:38:04.

completely unique adaptation. a perfect example of how post-war

:38:04.:38:07.

Japanese, especially Japanese men, have become plagued with the

:38:07.:38:10.

national resignation that's turned them into passive little sheep.

:38:10.:38:13.

LAUGHTER At a time when they should stand up

:38:13.:38:17.

and fight, they cower in the corner like little girls. I want people to

:38:17.:38:22.

leave the audience feeling like they had just been in the Morikami

:38:22.:38:26.

world for two hours. I feel like if we can do that, we have succeeded.

:38:26.:38:34.

I want more! I want more! And The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle chronicles

:38:34.:38:37.

in Edinburgh this Saturday at the King's Theatre. Next up, the

:38:37.:38:43.

darlings of the American comedy circuit, the variety duo Kurt

:38:43.:38:46.

Braunohler and Kristen Schaal. Together their combined talents

:38:46.:38:52.

include South Park and the Daily Show, but Kristen is better known

:38:52.:38:57.

as the Freaky Groupie in Flight of the Concordes. Together, they're in

:38:57.:39:00.

Edinburgh with a brand new show that changes every night. I met up

:39:00.:39:05.

with them to find out why variety is the spice of life. You guys,

:39:05.:39:07.

we're excited that you're here tonight because we have an amazing

:39:08.:39:12.

show for you. You said it, kurt. This show has everything. It has

:39:12.:39:18.

variety, variety, variety, variety, variety -

:39:18.:39:21.

LAUGHTER And you throw caution to the wind

:39:21.:39:25.

and you're doing a variety show. Are you nuts? We're wild. We're

:39:25.:39:29.

crazy! Tell me how you two met because it's an excellent double

:39:29.:39:35.

act. It really is. We met about six years ago at this place called the

:39:35.:39:40.

People's improv Theatre in New York City. When I said I wanted to start

:39:40.:39:45.

a variety show, the director said, "Kristen just asked me the same

:39:45.:39:50.

thing. "So I marched backstage. Yeah, you went backstage, and you

:39:50.:39:54.

just sat down, and you were like... Quite moody. Yeah. What did you

:39:54.:40:01.

think of that? As a first - as an introduction - the beckon is quite

:40:01.:40:07.

a hard... She ran. She ran like this - "What? What!" Oh, my God.

:40:07.:40:14.

You're talking to me. My favourite sketch you two do is with a

:40:14.:40:18.

ventriloquist dummy. It was hilarious, A, the physicality of

:40:18.:40:22.

you two being somehow connected, but it suddenly became really dark

:40:22.:40:26.

and twisted. Kristen, what do you think about this amazing audience,

:40:26.:40:36.
:40:36.:40:40.

huh? I want to meet them. You can't meet

:40:40.:40:46.

all of these people, Kristen. I want to shake their hand. All right.

:40:46.:40:50.

You can shake one person's hand, OK? You, sir, will you just come

:40:50.:41:00.
:41:00.:41:06.

here and shake her hand just to appease her? (I'm a real girl).

:41:06.:41:10.

(Help me. Help me.) So the elephant in the room is this

:41:10.:41:18.

mound of bandages. Was this part of a comic sketch or clumsiness...

:41:18.:41:22.

Isn't it hilarious I'll sacrifice my body for my comedy show? No, I

:41:22.:41:26.

was thinking, it's sunny out. Oh, my goodness! So I went for a run

:41:26.:41:31.

and went down a dirt path, and I guess I was running really fast...

:41:31.:41:36.

Also, she's very clumsy. When she falls, she use her knee to break

:41:36.:41:40.

her fall. She purposely puts it out there. For some reason my left knee

:41:40.:41:45.

is like, I'll save us, every time and bends and takes the fall. I was

:41:45.:41:49.

like Superman falling, and I just looked down a, and my knee was

:41:49.:41:57.

hanging open. I knew it was bad, and I was like,

:41:57.:41:59.

I have ruined a lot of things in our show.

:41:59.:42:04.

LAUGHTER Because we had a lot of physical

:42:04.:42:11.

comedy in it. I wonder where I should sit down. Should I sit on

:42:11.:42:20.

the chaise longue? No! Well, should I sit on the sofa? No! Well, I

:42:20.:42:23.

guess I'll just sit on the bed, then.

:42:23.:42:29.

CHEERING AND APPLAUSE (Flatulence)

:42:29.:42:35.

And finally, I have to ask, is your voice real? Mine is not because my

:42:35.:42:42.

voice is (High pitched) "Hey, can I get a drink of water." Is that how

:42:42.:42:46.

he normally... Yeah. But I have switched to this because it's more

:42:46.:42:50.

commercially acceptable. My voice is (Deep-pitched) More like this.

:42:51.:42:56.

But I think it's scary. We used to do the double act like this. That

:42:56.:43:03.

was our double act. Hi, I am Kurt. And I am Kristen. We used to be

:43:03.:43:07.

called squeezeky mouth and gravel voice. Look, it's been a joy. Best

:43:08.:43:12.

of luck with the variety show Hottub. Dude, you're great. Like-

:43:12.:43:19.

wise. Hot Tub is on until the 22nd of

:43:19.:43:23.

August in St George's Square. There is another side to this city which

:43:23.:43:29.

over the years has played host to many dastardly double acts, Burke

:43:29.:43:33.

and Hare, Jekyll and Hyde, Monsoon, and there are several productions

:43:33.:43:43.
:43:43.:43:56.

this year that are taking advantage For a month a year a pageant of

:43:56.:44:05.

prove olity floats across Edinburgh, like a shimmering veil, a haunting

:44:05.:44:09.

spirit so thick you can almost smell it. Edinburgh's long history

:44:09.:44:16.

is all huddled up the hill. It piles up on itself all cluttered

:44:16.:44:23.

and claustrophobe ig. Layers and layers of it. Forgotten streets lay

:44:23.:44:33.
:44:33.:44:35.

literally under your feet. There is something in the area that gets

:44:35.:44:42.

into the bones of the place. It is like mildew or damp. It is in

:44:42.:44:48.

everything here, ingrained into the texture and fabric of the place.

:44:48.:44:54.

The biblical rain, the big skies and sharp northern light. The

:44:54.:45:04.
:45:04.:45:08.

castle set on its craggy volcanic rock. The gnarly stoned crowns on

:45:08.:45:14.

the churches, the blackened gothic sticks which punctuate the jaged

:45:14.:45:23.

skyline. It is a foreboding kind of grandeur and it is something that

:45:23.:45:27.

must facility interthe creative imagination like it does into

:45:27.:45:33.

everything else. Maybe that's why there are so many shows with dark

:45:33.:45:41.

subject matter on offer at the festival. The this theatre is the

:45:41.:45:45.

home of new writing in Scotland and included in its programme this year

:45:45.:45:54.

are plays about freak shows and cannibals. As well as this

:45:54.:45:59.

production about a psychotic piano maestro from site-specific company

:45:59.:46:09.
:46:09.:46:14.

Grid Iron. There are lots of shows that use all the spooky places

:46:14.:46:24.

Edinburgh has to offer. This is the Anat my -- anatomy museum where

:46:24.:46:29.

Burke and Hare did all the body snatching. Apparently all the

:46:29.:46:39.
:46:39.:47:04.

corpses are down stairs in the Future proof is the directorial

:47:04.:47:09.

swan song of Traverse's Dominic Hill. It tells the tale of a

:47:09.:47:15.

travelling freak show which has hit hard times. I guess when thinking

:47:15.:47:20.

about the programme what I really like is the fact that there are a

:47:20.:47:26.

lot of kind of good stories within it, quite dark stories, stories of

:47:26.:47:33.

circuses or cannibals or plagues. And there is I think a kind of

:47:33.:47:37.

theatricality which appeals to me as a theatre maker. And I think

:47:37.:47:40.

also appeals to the city of Edinburgh as well. I'm very aware

:47:41.:47:47.

that here we are sitting in a graveyard, that this is the city of

:47:47.:47:50.

Burke and Hare. There's a fantastic history to this city. I find it

:47:50.:48:00.
:48:00.:48:00.

quite an inspiring city to work in. I went to see the final rehearsals

:48:00.:48:05.

for another Traverse show this year, a dance piece called Last Orders

:48:06.:48:15.
:48:16.:48:26.

which reimagines and updates the I think there's a lot of room for

:48:26.:48:30.

ketch-up blood in something as gothic as Edinburgh. There is

:48:30.:48:36.

something genuinely upsetting about that piece. It very quickly became

:48:36.:48:42.

uncomfortable watching that. It was very much about breaking a lot of

:48:42.:48:48.

taboos, and the ultimate taboo of cannibalism, of eating people.

:48:48.:48:52.

Genuinely quite an uncomfortable thing to watch, but very powerful I

:48:52.:48:59.

thought. Edinburgh's Newtown was designed as

:48:59.:49:04.

an escape from the medieval warren up the hill. The elegant rational

:49:04.:49:09.

heart of the Scottish enlightenment, the Dr Jeck toil the old town's Mr

:49:09.:49:18.

Hide. -- the Dr Jekyll to the old town's Mr Hide. The Newtown itself

:49:18.:49:25.

also has plenty of dark stories to tell. Ghost city is a series of

:49:25.:49:29.

audio installations describing sex parlours, cemeteries and ghosts of

:49:29.:49:36.

the past. As you walk along the streets of the new town you are

:49:36.:49:41.

unaware of each other's presence, as how could you be when 150 years

:49:41.:49:47.

separates one from the other? But as the drug you've both taken dulls

:49:47.:49:50.

the boundaries between the real and the imagined, something begins to

:49:50.:50:00.
:50:00.:50:08.

It is no surprise these shows find a home in Edinburgh. Drawn in line

:50:08.:50:12.

moths to a flickering candle. It's the perfect setting for these tales

:50:12.:50:18.

to play themselves out. Their poetencey only enhanced by the dark

:50:18.:50:22.

theatrical sense built of the city itself.

:50:22.:50:26.

Michael will be back next week when I will be getting limb to juggle

:50:26.:50:31.

with we are Wolves. Next up Ian Rankin is the UK's top-selling

:50:31.:50:37.

crime writer but he's got a bit of a thing about art. Sandy Nairn is a

:50:37.:50:44.

top UK museum director who has got a bit of a thing about crime.

:50:44.:50:50.

That's understandable as when his gallery lent �2 million of art to

:50:50.:50:57.

another gallery it was nicked. This is a really nice piece about Sandy

:50:57.:51:02.

Nairn's new book. An Italian painter decorator hides overnight

:51:02.:51:09.

in a up the board in the Louvre. He walks into the gallery, unhooks it

:51:09.:51:13.

and removes the panel from the outer frame, walks out of the front

:51:13.:51:18.

door of the gallery with the most famous painting in the world hidden

:51:18.:51:23.

under his coat. Nowadays the theft of the Mona Lisa in 1911 seems

:51:23.:51:29.

almost comic. The modern-day reality of art theft is much more

:51:29.:51:35.

sinister. Art theft nowadays is big business. Interpol reckons the

:51:35.:51:39.

trade in stolen art could be worth �3 billion a year and it's the

:51:39.:51:41.

fourth biggest illegal trade on the planet.

:51:41.:51:44.

As a writer of crime fiction, I've always been intrigued by the

:51:44.:51:47.

subject of art theft. To me, there's something quite sexy about

:51:47.:51:51.

the classic art heist. My own novel, Doors Open, concerns the theft of

:51:51.:51:53.

paintings from the storerooms of the National Gallery of Scotland

:51:53.:51:59.

here in Edinburgh. The art heist can be audacious. It can be clever,

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intricate, and it can almost be the perfect crime. Although my book was

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a work of fiction, art crime is a sad reality. It is estimated that

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over 10,000 works of art are stolen every year. The chances of

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recovering the works are very slim. On average nine out of ten pieces

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are never recovered. One man who has dealt with the fallout from art

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theft is museum director Sandy Nairn. During his time at the Tate,

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two of Turner's most famous paintings were stolen while on loan

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to a German gallery. The long struggle to recover the works is

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the subject of Nairn's new book. Why but write the book? When the

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Turners were stole no-one Frankfurt in 1994, I happened to be the

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person who ended up co-ordinating the recovery operations over the

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next eight-and-a-half years. I knew it was very unusual for a senior

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museum person to have been that closely involved. I thought there

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was something to tell that others might understand from it. But I

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then also wanted to get to the issues around art theft, the

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questions of value, the questions of myth, the motivations and the

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ethics. I felt those were important. A couple of the characters I really

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like in your book, they start off working for the Met and when they

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leave they were kept on as investigators weren't they? There

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was a particularly key pair of "Rocky" Rokoszynski and Mick

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Lawrence... Great names. I wish I had invented those names. Rocky was

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a great character. He did great work in the Met, mostly working in

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drug scams and gangstering businesses in Europe. We were lucky

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to get him. Was there a point where you thought these paintings are

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never coming back? It is hard to say. There were several points

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where I thought it was difficult. Four years after the theft we saw

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some very bad forgeries. Someone was trying to pass those on in

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Antwerp. There were five occasions in Germany when we were all set up

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potentially to be able to recover the second one and for various

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reasons we didn't. It must have been a huge sense of relief when

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you finally started to get these paintings back? A huge relief, a

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moment of joy. It was a strange moment, as I was still thinking,

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where are we going to put it, how do we get it back to England?, but

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no, it was incredible. This lying in front of us was the wonderful

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late Turner painting, Shade and Darkness - the Evening of the

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Deluge, probably now worth at least �18 million. Slowly, we started

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smiling and grinning at each other. At a certain moment, as all the

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consequences of getting this wrong loomed in my head, I asked Roy

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rather formally the question: "Roy, is this the genuine Turner

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painting?" After an extended pause, he said, "It's like meeting an old

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friend." I want to ask you, why do you think people steal these

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paintings? I think the financial thing is always there, and I think

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what we can see very notably, since the 1960s in particular, when we've

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got this incredible upward graph of the prices of the most notable

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pieces of art, whether they are ancient art or masters or whether

:55:17.:55:24.

they are now modern art or indeed contemporary. With it we see a

:55:24.:55:34.
:55:34.:55:35.

great deal more attempts at high- value thefts.. I think one can be

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distinct about the high-value thefts than the regular stealing

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from houses. Can musiums ever be completely 100% secure? I guess not,

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if they are letting in the public. I think letting the public in has

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to be the priority, as well as the security of the paintings and works

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of art. With high-value items there'll always be criminals who

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think is there a way of overcoming this. The fact that the public,

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writers, fantastic makers down the years are fascinated by art heists.

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We are aren't we? A I'm not sure why. I should ask you, why but want

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to write Doors Open? Stkwhri wanted to write a history novel. I wanted

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to write a heist movie and I'm fascinated about art. I'm jealous.

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I wish I could paint but I can't. I can't even draw a stick man. When I

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was given the opportunity to write a book different from a detective

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story, there would be no murders in it, just the heist and the people

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involved. I've noticed that since the publication of Doors Open,

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curators follow me round galleries. I'm sure you can be trusted. They

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ought to think you know more about it and how difficult it when

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something is stolen what to do with it. That's why I haven't stolen it

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in real life. Join us at the same time next week. If you need more of

:57:06.:57:11.

a cultural fix, tune in at 11 o'clock tomorrow night to catch the

:57:11.:57:15.

Review Show. We leave new the capable hands of Arthur Smith, who

:57:15.:57:22.

has been relaxing this year with laughter yoga. This refreshs the

:57:22.:57:29.

Sue Perkins presents the second of three programmes featuring highlights from 2011's Edinburgh Festival.

Clemency Burton-Hill takes a look at multi-media theatre production, The Wind Up Bird Chronicle based on Haruki Murakami's cult novel; Alastair Sooke meets sculptor Tony Cragg, as Edinburgh hosts the first major retrospective of his work; and author Ian Rankin chats to museum director Sandy Nairn about his experience of art theft.

Plus all the best comedy and performance from the Fringe.


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