A Tale of Two Towns

Born in Peebles, and then educated in Edinburgh and at art college in Aberdeen, Philip’s professional life saw him work as an art teacher at Selkirk High, as well as at various Borders primary schools, Borders College and in private classes.

Now retired from teaching, he has lived on Peebles High Street for the past 40 years – an observational position in the heart of the town that has helped fuel his work as a painter.

“These paintings are a selection from a large and varied output over many years – paintings of inner worlds and outer circumstances,” explained Philip. “Sometimes the outer circumstances are the streets, the river and hillsides immediately around us, and these are the focus of this exhibition.”

There are also, he added, paintings that seek the essential character of the town and display the contrast with the “other place” just 20 miles away.

“There are paintings that engage with community concerns and anxieties, the swelling suburbanisation, the flood-vulnerable centre, the tensions of environment, private cars and public transport,” continued Philip.

“There are paintings that show a tiny city – not quaint, countrified and folksy, but urban, European and connected, as are the lives of many residents of this town.”

Peebles and the Other Place is on display at the Eastgate Theatre’s Anne Younger Studio until 24 December (10am-5pm, Tues to Sat). A percentage of sales from the exhibition will be donated to the theatre’s Open Doors campaign.

Cinema returns to the Eastgate

Audiences now have the chance to see and hear the difference for themselves when the Eastgate Cinema re-opens on Sat 7 November with screenings of Onward, the latest Disney/Pixar epic, at 2pm and 4pm.

The tale of two teenage elf brothers who embark on a magical quest to spend one more day with their late father marks the start of a new programme that features children’s films every Saturday afternoon.

The new programme also features films for adults on Wednesday afternoons (2.30pm) and evenings (7pm), beginning with screenings of the feel-good Military Wives on Wed 11 Nov. One of the films due to be shown before lockdown in March, Military Wives is the story of a group of women, thrown together by life on a military base while their partners serve in Afghanistan, who raise their spirits by forming a Military Wives’ Choir.

As well as films, the weekly line-up between now and Christmas will feature a variety of stage performances on screen – with titles including the Bolshoi Ballet’s production of Romeo and Juliet (Tues 10 Nov) and a film version of Ian Rickson’s recent stage production of Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya (Thurs 12 Nov).

The Eastgate Cinema, like other film venues, will open with greatly reduced capacity due to physical distancing, and various other precautions in place, which means that audiences will be invited to arrive slightly earlier than usual.

Onward, the first screening of the Eastgate’s new film programme, shows at 2pm and 4pm on Sat 7 November. Current circumstances are, inevitably, liable to change and this may affect the distribution of some films. For full details, and to secure your precious seat in the stalls, keep an eye on www.eastgatearts.com

Wild Walls at the Eastgate

Scotland’s rich and often dramatic landscape inspires in many different ways – and that’s no more apparent than in the approach of two Peebles-based artists whose work is currently on display at the Eastgate Theatre.

The Eastgate Plans for the Future

The Eastgate Theatre received welcome news on 24th September, when it heard that its application to the Scottish Government’s Performing Arts Venue Relief Fund had been successful.  A grant of £70,000 has been awarded by Creative Scotland to allow the theatre to protect jobs and continue to employ artists and freelancers between now and the end of March 2021 so that it can continue to deliver the arts experiences so appreciated by the community.

Beautiful arms - ballet class

New Classes in Dance, Combat, Drama and Yoga

October sees the welcome return of arts classes in dance, drama, yoga and medieval combat offering something for everyone from 3 to 93.

Eastgate Theatre Launches Open Doors Campaign

With uncertainty about exactly when it will reopen, but a determination to do so with a creative offering that reflects the new realities of life after lockdown, the Eastgate Theatre has launched a campaign that will enable it to continue contributing to the lives of people of all ages and interests across Tweeddale and beyond.

Momentous Year for the Eastgate

We look back on another action-packed 12 months at the Eastgate, which included the most significant physical change for the theatre since it opened in 2004.

Carlops Celebrates Musical Connections

Folk music fans are expected to flock to Carlops on Saturday 20 July when the village hall will be filled with the sound of modern Scottish folk music performed by harpist Rachel Newton and fiddle player Lauren MacColl.

Horse McDonald head and shoulders

Creative Peebles Festival 2019 Programme Announced

Edinburgh may hog the headlines when it comes to arts festivals in August, but art lovers don’t have to head to the capital to experience all sorts of activities next month. Running for ten days from Friday 23 August to Sunday 1 September Creative Peebles Festival 2019 celebrates the wealth of creative talent found locally, shining a light on the work of artists, musicians, arts groups, film makers and craftspeople found in this most artistic of towns.

This year’s festival offers not just a host of indoor performances and workshops but also opportunities to explore the often surprising history, architecture, nature and landscape of Peebles through an expanded programme of walks, talks and tours.

Young Artistic Talent in the Spotlight

Actors, musicians and dancers will take centre stage in a selection of events that begins with Tweed Theatre’s youth performers presenting a new production of Willie Russell’s Blood Brothers on Friday 3 and Saturday 4 May. A play version of Russell’s famous musical, it tells the story of twin brothers, separated at birth, who meet up later in life and become best friends.

Between these two performances, on 4 May, Stride Young Dance Company will perform to music written and performed live on stage by members of Nomad Beat Community Music School who have, in turn, taken inspiration from artwork created by Evie Douglas. The project, called Only Connect, part of the Inspiring Life Creative Initiative, explores what happens when art, dance and music connect.

On 23 May, the Eastgate presents the world premiere of Twisted Tales – a collection of three, one-act plays about nasty children devised and performed by the drama students of Peebles High School.

Finally, in All the Stars, the junior pupils (aged 5 – 11) of the Fiona Henderson School of Dance bring the month to a close by performing their now traditional annual dance extravaganza on 25 & 26 May.

This specially choreographed show will display all the new steps the pupils have learned over the past year in a variety of theatrical dances in ballet, tap, modern, jazz, acro, Irish, street and Highland.

Tickets for these and other events during May are available from Box Office on 01721 725777, or online at www.eastgatearts.com