Camille O'Sullivan's love affair with Edinburgh and remarkable run of enigmatic performances at the Festival Fringe started in 2004. The city has been a showcase for her prowess as a singer and storyteller ever since.

"Going to the Fringe seemed like a big step” she says. “I was invited the first year I appeared in a show there, but by the time I arrived the company had lost its place to perform. David Bates from the Spiegeltent asked me to join the show La Clique. I knew the moment I was in that tent that it was going to take me on a journey and probably change my life.

"Ewen Bremner was in the audience one night and spoke to Stephen Frears who cast me for a film he was making, Mrs Henderson Presents. I always thought Edinburgh would open doors for me but this was unbelievable."

The Irish performer challenged herself to create a new show for the following year and has continued in that vein. The Fringe became a place for Camille to develop a charismatic performance style that's taken her around the world.

"When I look back, some years were much better than others. I mean, I was electrocuted on stage one year and people thought it was part of my show but the band knew it wasn't because I stopped talking and they know I never do that. Some shows the reviews are great and you can see people are excited."

Interview: Camille O'Sullivan on life at the Edinburgh Fringe

Dreaming is an evening of dark and light songs - transformed emotional standards from Bowie, Cohen, Pulp, Radiohead and Rufus Wainwright.

During the pandemic pause on live shows, Camille was lacking in confidence. "I'd forgotten what I did" she says. "Eventually I went to a studio, just to record anything. We went to a farm outside Dublin and it was me and Feargal Murray in the same room with him playing piano. Two takes and on the second we'd play the song the way we've always wanted to.

"I have hid myself behind the band, now, after two years, I want to have a laugh." A stripped-back, open and personal show was born. "I think I can be more fragile and honest, it will be like going into someone's sitting room. I'm talking a bit more and letting it all go to the audience."

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What's life like for a performer in Edinburgh? "In the early years I was surrounded by circus performers who would be getting undressed all the time and there were actors and comedians on full force nights out. I made a rule that I would never meet an Irish actor until the fourth week of the festival because you'd be out all night.

"I remember we had an amazing apartment and people would arrive at our house all times of the morning and night depending on when shows finished. I woke up with two of them kneeling in the room, I asked what they were doing and they said "praying the hangover will go". They were to be back on stage in half an hour."

Camille spends an extra week in Edinburgh after the shows are over. "There's the nobility of that town and there is a roughness, it also looks like it's carved out of stone. Whenever I see it again, there's nothing more beautiful.

"I like going to the same places, I think in a way it feels like home, so I return to things that I recognise. I take walks down to The Shore at Leith and I'll go for afternoon tea in the Balmoral. You meet people in Edinburgh during the festival who have gone through massive things in their lives and they share it with you. It's a very open time."

Camille O’Sullivan: Dreaming, Underbelly – The Cowbarn: 3-28 August, 7.20pm. This feature first appeared in the August edition of Best of Scotland magazine.