The Twelve Days of TradFest - The start of summer in Edinburgh

The Twelve Days of TradFest

Alisdair Fraser & Natalie Haas

From 24th April to 6th May, Edinburgh will once again play host to a new festival: TradFest. This extravaganza brings to the city twelve days of music, song, storytelling, dance, craft, folk drama and environmental celebrations for Mayday/Beltane!

There are performances and workshops, dances and exhibitions, walks and talks … in all, 82 events will take place at both indoor and outdoor venues including Greyfriars Kirk, Arthurs Seat, Calton Hill and Portobello Promenade.

There really is a huge range of events taking place!


TradFest has been inspired by the traditional arts of Scotland and promises entertainment for all the family, while showcasing homegrown Scots and Gaelic talent alongside artists from across the world.

The History

From earliest times the people of Edinburgh marked the start of summer with hilltop fires and silent dawns. Harvesting The Prom on the Prom 1fresh boughs they then danced and performed street plays about mythical heroes such as Robin of the greenwood.

And traditional ceilidhs incorporated three forms of entertainment: dance, music and storytelling. TradFest aims to reinstate storytelling as a key element of Scottish arts and the start-of-summer celebrations, whilst continuing to present a diverse range of events to suit all ages and interests.

To see the full program, click here.

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