Hidden Door

Press

Triumphant 2021 return for Hidden Door Festival

Hidden Door festival returned in triumphant fashion in September 2021, bringing the iconic Granton Gasworks to life with five days of music, dance, theatre, spoken word and visual art.

Taking place across two sites on West Shore Road, Edinburgh, the festival featured music from Scottish indie legend Pictish Trail, electronic maestro Rival Consoles and electro-pop star Hannah Diamond.

Other key acts included afro-funk mega-band Ibibio Sound Machine and Manchester-based indie band The Orielles, plus a selection of rising stars from the UK music scene.

The festival offered a full programme of theatre, dance, spoken word and visual art, alongside a series of creative collaborative projects.

Those creative collaborative projects came from the Hidden Door Live shows, where performers were given the opportunity to work together to create something new. They were so successful that many of the musicians, artists, theatre makers and dancers were asked to develop the creative collaborations into live performances for this year’s festival.

Speaking ahead of the festival, David Martin, Creative Director of Hidden Door, said: “It is hugely exciting to be working on this event. We have all sacrificed so much over the last 15 months and so many people have missed that feeling of being together – of sharing the experience of dancing together, of feeling inspired and joyful together. That is what we are doing this for.

“We’ve put together a programme that reflects this amazing moment – it is optimistic and upbeat, and full of acts who are just making incredible music right now. Music has been something that has got a lot of people through the lockdowns; but music also has an amazing ability to bring us together, and we have packed as much of it as we possibly can into this programme because there was just so much we wanted to get in there.”

More info

Hidden Door is an arts organisation which aims to open up urban spaces as a platform for new and emerging artists, musicians, theatre makers, performers, film makers and poets. Through organising temporary events Hidden Door works to showcase new work and create engaging environments for the public to experience, explore and discover.

Hidden Door has steadily grown in size and reputation since it began in 2014, when it cleared out the abandoned Market Street vaults to run a 9-day arts festival focused on showcasing local creative talent. In 2015 the festival moved to a hidden courtyard behind Kings’ Stables Road, and returned there in 2016, attracting over 12,000 visitors to experience a wealth of art, poetry, theatre, film, dance and music. In 2017 the festival breathed new life into the old Leith Theatre, attracting rave reviews and critical praise for its role in resurrecting “Scotland’s best new live music venue”, winning a Scottish Thistle Award for “Best Cultural Event or Festival”. It returned there in 2018 whilst also opening up the iconic State Cinema around the corner, then following a farewell weekender at Leith Theatre in 2019, organisers brought the iconic Granton Gasworks and neighbouring warehouse to life in 2021.

Web: www.hiddendoorarts.org

Hashtag: #HiddenDoor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/hiddendoorarts

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hiddendoor

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hiddendoorarts

What people say about Hidden Door…

“A triumphant move to an evocative new space… this top-rate festival has returned with a flourish” David Pollock, The List

A ”riot of noise and colour” Mike Wade, The Times

A “treasure trove of multi-platform arts delights” Vic Galloway, BBC 6Music

“Wildly atmospheric and stimulating. Like a dream festival.” Mark Cousins, Film Director & Critic

“Edinburgh’s most free-flowing festival, a happy blend of grassroots artists and headline acts.” – Mark Fisher, The Guardian

“Once again, Hidden Door have done a quite incredible job of transforming a disused industrial corner of Edinburgh into a stunning, temporary multi-arts venue.” – David Pollock, The Scotsman

“Utterly breathtaking… Edinburgh’s most exciting and innovative festival.” Ruth MacGilp, Urbanity

“Hidden Door have quietly resuscitated what surely is – even in its current rough ‘n’ ready state – the best live music venue in the country.” Barry Gordon, The Herald

An “inspiring and successful festival” which “perfectly demonstrated the capabilities of the gorgeous old Leith Theatre as a living, breathing concert venue”. “Ad-hoc but ingeniously curated art and performance” David Pollock, The Scotsman

A “minor miracle […] a long-neglected building has undergone a remarkable renaissance”. Brian Ferguson, The Scotsman

“With each step further into the depths of this abandoned masterpiece, the building grows wilder. Each corner, every space reveals something new” Amy Taylor, The Skinny

A “nomadic cauldron of creativity which is unlikely to sit still for long […] a sprawling village of alternative culture” Neil Cooper, The Herald

“A smorgasbord of cultural delicacies that’ll keep you well and truly entertained. Re-entering the real world may be a struggle, but it’ll have been worth it.” Euro Hostels

“Get along to Hidden Door as often and as soon as you can.” Just For Culture

“A revelation… a community arts festival that actually revolutionises and invigorates the community it takes place in.” Miss Fogg Travels

“I can’t help but be totally awestruck by it all – eclectic, ramshackle, ambitious joys on offer.” Exeunt Magazine

“A fascinating and well-thought-out programme” The John Byrne Award

The festival “has left an immovable, and much needed, creative footprint on the city” – Miranda Heggie, The Arts Desk

Images for general use

Download images of 2021 acts and the Granton site (Dropbox link)

Download images from previous Hidden Door festivals (Zip file, 6MB)

The very talented Chris Scott has been capturing great shots of Hidden Door for years – check them out here:

Press mentions

2021

5 Stars – Music review: Hidden Door Opening Party, Granton Gasworks – Scotsman, 17 September 2021

Hidden Door Festival review – The List, 17 September 2021

Hidden Door Festival kicks off at Granton Gasworks – The List, 16 September 2021

Hidden Door: Festival transforms former industrial sites on Edinburgh waterfront – Scotsman, 15 September 2021

Hidden Door will promote art graduates – support their crowdfunder – Edinburgh Reporter, 30 August 2021

Hidden Door festival finally set to put Granton on Edinburgh’s cultural map – Scotsman, 30 June 2021

Organisers of Edinburgh’s Hidden Door festival reveal move to Granton – Forth One Radio, 30 June 2021

Hidden Door comes out into the open – Edinburgh Reporter, 30 June 2021

Hidden Door 2021: The Music Programme – The Skinny, 30 June 2021

First acts revealed for Edinburgh’s Hidden Door festival at new waterfront site – Scotsman, 30 June 2021

Hidden Door 2021 – who’s playing the music…. – Edinburgh Reporter, 30 June 2021

Edinburgh’s Hidden Door Festival to transform local gas works for live performances – Edinburgh Live, 28 May 2021

Hidden Door Festival 2021: Mystery Edinburgh location revealed – Edinburgh Evening News, 28 May 2021

Hidden Door is happening… at Granton Gasworks – Edinburgh Reporter, 28 May 2021

Five-day Hidden Door festival to return in ‘mystery location’ in Edinburgh this year – The Scotsman, 22 April 2021

Hidden Door Festival – yes they’re back! – Edinburgh Reporter, 22 April 2021

Hidden Door sets September 2021 return – All Edinburgh Theatre, 22 April 2021

Musicians light up Scottish beach with socially distanced performance – The National, 3 April 2021

Hidden Door – watch The Call online now – Edinburgh Reporter, 2 April 2021

Musicians perform special score live on city beach for Hidden Door – Edinburgh Evening News, 2 April 2021

Hidden Door Festival – where is the next venue hiding? – Edinburgh Reporter, 11 February 2021

2020

Hidden Door – online and on until May 2021 – Edinburgh Reporter, 12 October 2020

Hidden Door Festival postponed until spring 2021 – The List, 23 April 2020

2019

Hidden Door at Leith Theatre – A multidimensional experience for the urban art adventurer – Deadline, 12 June 2019

Festival Review: Hidden Door 2019 – The Scotsman, 3 June 2019

Edinburgh’s Hidden Door Festival to be staged across city in future – The Scotsman, 31 May 2019

Hidden Door goes back to festival roots – The Herald, 25 May 2019

Hidden Door 2019 unveils its largest visual arts programme yet – The List, 15 May 2019

The Rise of Community-Led Festivals in Scotland – The Skinny, 10 May 2019

Hidden Door bring four day music weekender to Leith – The Scotsman, 30 April 2019

Hidden Door 2019: Music programme revealed – The Skinny, 22 March 2019

Hidden Door announces the first music acts of its 2019 weekender – The List, 21 March 2019

Hidden Door Weekender 2019 line-up revealed – Edinburgh Reporter, 21 March 2019

Hidden Door 2019 – Edinburgh Reporter, 2 February 2019

Hidden Door to return to Leith Theatre in 2019 – The List, 2 February 2019

It’s all systems go for Hidden Door 2019 – Edinburgh Reporter, 25 January 2019

Hidden Door to return in 2019 after successful fundraising campaign – Edinburgh Evening News, 25 January 2019

2018

Final push for Hidden Door – what can you do to help? – Edinburgh Reporter, 3 December 2018

More events fundraise for Hidden Door – The Herald, 3 December 2018

Funding crisis forces Hidden Door festival to drastically scale back – The Scotsman, 3 December 2018

Hidden Door launches appeal for help to secure its future – The List, 13 August 2018

Hidden Door begins a new fundraiser – Edinburgh Reporter, 12 August 2018

Hidden Door to launch crowdfunder in bid to keep organisation alive – The Scotsman, 10 August 2018

Leith Theatre gears up for Edinburgh Festival comeback – Edinburgh Evening News, 9 August 2018

Review: Hidden Door Festival – transforming spaces – The Arts Desk, 7 June 2018

Art Review: Hidden Door Visual Art Programme – The Scotsman, 4 June 2018

Review: Young Fathers at Hidden Door – The List, 4 June 2018

Magical Plastic Chicken review – intriguingly arresting satire – The Guardian, 3 June 2018

Review: Young Fathers at Leith Theatre, Hidden Door Festival – Just For Culture, 3 June 2018

Review: Hidden Door Festival 2018 – Exeunt Magazine, 2 June 2018

Hidden Door Festival successfully introduces international dance strand – The List, 31 May 2018

Another successful takeover from pop-up festival Hidden Door – My Theatre Mates, 30 May 2018

Hidden Door Festival Lights Up Leith – Urbanity Blog, 30 May 2018

Review: Hidden Door Festival at Leith Theatre – The Skinny, 30 May 2018

Private View: five artists making work at this year’s Hidden Door – The List, 29 May 2018

Arts Review: Hidden Door Festival, Leith Theatre & State Cinema – The Scotsman, 29 May 2018

Review: Hidden Door Opening Night at Leith Theatre – The Herald, 28 May 2018

Review: Sylvan Esso at Hidden Door, Leith Theatre – The Wee Review, 27 May 2018

Hidden Door – opening night theatre review – All Edinburgh Theatre, 27 May 2018

Nadine Shah, The Orb’s Dr Alex Paterson, Emma Pollock and Young Fathers at Hidden Door – The Herald, 24 May 2018

A derelict art deco cinema is being brought back to life for one last time – Metro, 23 May 2018

Derelict Edinburgh cinema being brought back to life for final showing – Edinburgh Evening News, 20 May 2018

Hidden Door Preview – a multi-arts festival in abandoned spaces – The Cusp, 17 May 2018

Film Festival will hit the screen for Hidden Door event – Scottish Field, 16 May 2018

Edinburgh’s hidden spaces provide a creative backdrop – Scottish Field, 11 May 2018

Tea break with… David Martin – The National, 6 May 2018

Breathing new life into abandoned old buildings – Scottish Field, 4 May 2018

Arts festival to transform derelict building – Third Force News, 4 May 2018

Hidden Door launch 2018 campaign – The Wee Review, 29 April 2018

The UK’s best independent, alternative events – Euro Hostels, 26 April 2018

Music Review: Hidden Door Launch Party, Liquid Room, Edinburgh – The Scotsman, 6 March 2018

Leith becoming an attractive host of festival events – The Scotsman, 5 March 2018

Hidden Door announce full programme, with Nadine Shah, Young Fathers and Sylvan Esso – The List, 2 March 2018

Young Fathers to stage Leith Theatre gig at Hidden Door festival – The Scotsman, 2 March 2018

Pick of Hidden Door 2018 – Edinburgh Reporter, 2 March 2018

Hidden Door 2018 – more diverse than ever – Edinburgh Reporter, 2 March 2018

Hidden Door festival 2018 adds new venue, features Young Fathers, theatre, spoken word and visual art – The Herald, 2 March 2018

EIFF teams up with Hidden Door Festival this May – Edinburgh Reporter, 2 March 2018

Hidden Door Festival: 2018 programme revealed – The Skinny, 2 March 2018

Nadine Shah to kick off Hidden Door 2018 at Leith Theatre – The List, 1 March 2018

Encore for neglected Leith Theatre as bands return – The Scotsman, 24 February 2018

£1m boost for theatre abandoned nearly 20 years – The Herald, 17 February 2018

Capital’s £10m spending spree on cultural venues – The Scotsman, 16 February 2018

2017

Leith Theatre rebirth in the running for Creative Edinburgh Awards – The Scotsman, 13 November 2017

Hidden Door festival to return to Leith Theatre – The Stage, 5 November 2017

Hidden Door returns to Leith Theatre and new venue – The Skinny, 3 November 2017

Landmark Art Deco cinema to be reborn for Hidden Door festival in Leith – The Herald, 3 November 2017

Former Leith cinema to reopen as Hidden Door festival venue – The Scotsman, 3 November 2017

It’s Leith again for Hidden Door – All Edinburgh Theatre, 3 November 2017

Hidden Door returns to Leith for 2018 festival – The List, 3 November 2017

Hidden Door confirms 2018 fest – All Edinburgh Theatre, 25 September 2017

Music review: Tinderbox Orchestra at Hidden Door – The Scotsman, 10 June 2017

Live Review: Tinderbox Orchestra at Hidden Door Festival – The National Student, 9 June 2017

Tinderbox Orchestra launch album as Hidden Door closes – Channel 7a, 5 June 2017

Leith Theatre is a gem of a venue – The Scotsman, 5 June 2017

Inside Look: Hidden Door Days 7 & 8 – Just For Culture, 3 June 2017

Hidden Door review: Flint & Pitch and Metropolis – The Herald, 2 June 2017

Idlewild at Hidden Door: Review – God Is In The TV, 2 June 2017

Hidden Door Festival – Take It From A Local, 1 June 2017

Leith Theatre is Scotland’s best new live music venue. Let’s do everything we can to keep it going – The List, 1 June 2017

Hidden Door 2017: Day 5 Review – The Wee Review, 31 May 2017

Hidden Door opening weekend in pictures – The List, 31 May 2017

Rules of the Moon at Hidden Door: Review – The Herald, 30 May 2017

Inside Look: The old Leith Theatre – we explore the venue – Just For Culture, 30 May 2017

Inside Look: Hidden Door Festival 2017 – Just For Culture, 30 May 2017

The Adventures of Prince Achmed: Review – The Herald, 29 May 2017

Hidden Door 2017 – Day 2 Review – The Wee Review, 29 May 2017

Leith Theatre reopens doors for arts festival – The Times, 29 May 2017

Festival review: Hidden Door opening weekend – The Scotsman, 29 May 2017

KinoKlub at Hidden Door: Review – Cinema’s Fringes, 27 May 2017

Derelict Leith theatre to open up for Edinburgh Festival – The Scotsman, 26 May 2017

Hidden Door finds a new home at Leith Theatre – The Herald, 26 May 2017

Hidden Door 2017 – Lost in Leith Theatre – The Skinny, 25 May 2017

Hidden Door festival is helping to bring Leith Theatre back to life – The Scotsman, 22 May 2017

Hidden Door: the festival turning Edinburgh’s forgotten spaces into creative hubs – The i, 8 May 2017

Hidden Door Festival transforms and reopens the Leith Theatre after almost three decades – The List, 12 April 2017

The essential guide to summer in Edinburgh – The i, 10 April 2017

Artists to lead creation of new ‘vision for Leith’ – The Scotsman, 10 April 2017

Trainspotting director Danny Boyle calls for help to bring Leith Theatre back to life – The National, 7 April 2017

Trainspotting director Danny Boyle backs Leith Theatre plea – Edinburgh Evening News, 6 April 2017

‘Hidden Door’ Launch Crowd-funding Campaign to Restore Leith Theatre – Edinburgh Reporter, 6 April 2017

Former Edinburgh Royal Infirmary building in frame to host arts festival – The Scotsman, 25 March 2017

Hidden Door festival to revive abandoned old Leith Theatre – Time Out, 20 March 2017

Hidden Door releases plans for Leith Theatre festival – The Herald, 7 March 2017

#HiddenDoor 2017 Festival will be in fabulous Leith – Edinburgh Reporter, 3 March 2017

Anna Meredith and Idlewild kick off Hidden Door 2017 – The List, 3 March 2017

Hidden Door Festival reveals line-up for reborn Leith Theatre – The Scotsman, 3 March 2017

Hidden Door reveals 2017 line up – The Skinny, 3 March 2017

Writer’s Picks for 2017 – TV Bomb, 5 Jan 2017

17 reasons to visit Edinburgh in 2017 – This Is Edinburgh, 4 Jan 2017

Trainspotting author Irvine Welsh to help save Leith theatre – BBC News, 4 Jan 2017

Irvine Welsh leads campaign to restore Leith Theatre – The Stage, Jan 6 2017

Irvine Welsh backing fantastic news for Leith Theatre – Edinburgh Evening News, 3 Jan 2017

Trainspotting author plots Leith’s return to the stage – The Scotsman, 8 Jan 2017

Trainspotting author aims to bring bright lights back to Leith – The Times, 3 Jan 2017

2016

Leith’s Citadel Theatre given fresh life after 30 years – The Stage, 8 Nov 2016

Derelict Leith theatre to rise again as citadel of the arts – The Times, 2 Nov 2016

Hidden Door Festival To Revitalise Leith Citadel Theatre – Edinburgh Guide, 1 Nov 2016

Festival review: Hidden Door, Electric City – Scotsman, 6 June 2016

Glittered theatre review at Hidden Door – TV Bomb, 5 June 2016

Theatre review: Hidden Door, Abandoned Street Lighting Depot – Herald, 30 May 2016

Experts in Short Trousers theatre review at Hidden Door  – TV Bomb, 29 May 2016

Teleman concert review at Hidden Door – Back of the Crowd, 29 May 2016

Ubu Roi theatre review at Hidden Door – TV Bomb, 29 May 2016

Plenty of great artists to catch at Hidden Door – The National, 26 May 2016

2015

Hidden Doors to return to King’s Stables Rd depot – Edinburgh Evening News, 24 Nov 2015

Hidden Door was the kind of DIY arts showcase Edinburgh needs – Wow24/7, 6 June 2015

Interactive walls tumble as Hidden Door comes to a close – Herald, 2 June 2015

5 Star Review: Hidden Door festival, Edinburgh – Scotsman, 29 May 2015

Art Review: Hidden Door Festival 2015 – The List, 29 May 2015

Hidden Door theatre review from The Secret Courtyard – Herald, 25 May 2015

Review: Hidden Door Festival – Edinburgh Feminist Review, 25 May 2015

Hidden Door’s theatrical highlights – The List, 22 May 2015

Hidden Door Festival 2016: An Artistic Wonderland – Channel 7A, 20 May 2015

Art thrives behind Edinburgh’s Hidden Door festival – Herald, 16 May 2015

Private View: Hidden Door Festival 2015 – The List, 8 April 2015

Former Grassmarket depot to host 2015 Hidden Door festival – STV Edinburgh, 3 March 2015

2014

Festival review: Hidden Door Festival, Edinburgh – Scotsman, 30 March 2014

Hidden Door Festival 2014: Edinburgh Short Film Festival Highlights – Edinburgh Reporter, 28 March 2014

Hidden Door Festival: Vaults transformed into market – Edinburgh Evening News, 27 March 2014

Hidden Door festival aims to instil Edinburgh with a new DIY events ethos – The List, 21 March 2014

Hidden Door Festival announces Early Bird tickets on sale – The List, 2 Feb 2014