Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

New Fringe venue for Princes Street Gardens

Image caption The new venue will showcase live music, comedy, theatre and cabaret

Edinburgh's biggest Fringe promoter is to create a new venue in the city's Princes Street Gardens to mark its 30th year at the festival.

Against the backdrop of Edinburgh Castle, the venue will "re-invigorate" the Ross Bandstand site with a "sub-structure" for a Belgian dance tent.

The venue will showcase live music, comedy, theatre and cabaret and a free outdoor programme of entertainment.

The venue will start with the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival on 30 July.

Assembly @ Princes Street Gardens will be one of three main Assembly venues.

It started in 1981 by turning the Georgian Assembly Rooms into a multi-venue before adding the Assembly Hall on the Mound to its list of sites.

William Burdett-Coutts, artistic director of Assembly, said: "Assembly has come a long way since it started in 1981.

"Every year we have set out to improve the service we offer to the public, primarily through the quality of the work we present, but as much as what you see on stage is important, a festival experience is also about what happens off stage.

"This new Ross Bandstand addition to our venues is aimed to augment what we can offer the public and is set in one of the most beautiful locations in the world.

"The venue will provide wonderful shows along with a special outdoor experience."

Headline acts include comedian Frank Skinner, who will host his own talk show, a new show by former Cirque de Soleil star Julien Cottereau, South African singers the Bala Brothers and cabaret diva Meow Meow.

Free events will be staged throughout the day at the bandstand, however access to the gardens will be restricted after dusk so visitors are only able to visit the event arena.

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