MEP guest appearance as national theatre stage hand

26 July 2006
The first act of the National Theatre of Scotland (NTS) was praised by SNP MEP Alyn Smith today as he spent a day as a stage hand with the crew of the theatre's Edinburgh Fringe production.

Mr Smith joined NTS as part of his two weeks work experience around Scotland. Mr Smith has recently been investigating EU support for culture and the different levels of support provided by other countries to local and national arts companies.

Speaking from the set of Black Watch, the National Theatre of Scotland's first Edinburgh fringe show Mr Smith said

"Watching the National Theatre come to life in Scotland, seeing their innovative shows and what a difference they are already making to the theatre scene in Scotland has been quite incredible.

"NTS are destined not just to be one of the best companies in Scotland, but Europe as well. This show is bound to make a splash at the fringe and deserves to do so.

"In recent months it has been unfortunate to see some theatre and cultural organisations suffering through the withdrawal of Scottish Arts Council money and other problems. The NTS should not replace those companies who had a lot to offer but it is important we see the NTS go from strength to strength.

"I want to see Scottish arts, Scottish culture, Scottish performers on show all over the world and starting with our near neighbours in the EU. There is a new modern face to Scottish arts and culture and we need to show that.

"I am looking forward to catching the final production on the fringe and wish all at NTS well."