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Culture Secretary's thoughts on Festival

THE Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop on her 2013 Edinburgh International Festival, shows seen and yet to see.

l Peter Doig, No Foreign Lands, Scottish National Gallery: "Quite phenomenal, quite stunning. At the opening of the show, I congratulated him from the people of Scotland.

"I found it great to see his story and development - there is so much material, the art itself is wonderful. The galleries should be congratulated for pulling it off."

l New Voices, part of New Voices presented by Scottish Ballet at EIF: "Very exciting and such storytelling here. I love dance, and Scottish Ballet are doing good things here at the festival - a really dynamic journey."

l Alexander Nevsky, Prokofiev, RSNO conducted by Valery Gergieve, the opening concert of the EIF: "It was first class, very dynamic and wonderful, especially the pianist Daniil Trifonov who was powerful."

l Mary, Queen of Scots at the National Museum of Scotland: "It is a very thoughtful exhibition, touching on so many different parts of her life, her politics, the wider politics of the time."

l Tales of Magical Realism, Fringe, at Summerhall: "The performance was immersive and impressive with great atmosphere but I am not sure it had a sense of place. I wasn't sure what I was expecting, but it wasn't having to ride a ­bicycle. I have experienced nothing like that before."

l The Tragedy of Coriolanus, Beijing People's Art Theatre, at the EIF: "I am looking forward to seeing this, Chinese productions are always so superb."

l The Tattoo: "I do enjoy the Tattoo. I love the international nature of that exchange, the different musicians, and what that means in itself, the way they bind together."

l Kiss Cuddle Torture, at the St John's festival, Fringe: "I always think you should choose something at the Fringe you know will be good, one that people have referred to you as good, and one you like the sound of. I am going along to support my parliamentary assistant who, as a writer, has her first play there."

Ms Hyslop will also be attending Anoesis, Rolling Hills Chorus, Menage a Trois, Whatever Gets You Through The Night, and Anything Goes - a Tribute to Cole Porter at the Fringe, Dido and Aneas and Blackbeard's Castle, Mahler's Ninth at EIF, Liz ­Lochhead, Saltire Publisher of the Year Award and Iain Banks ­Celebration at the EIBF.

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