Creative Inspiration

Behind the Scenes: Hidden Door Arts Festival 2015

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On Wednesday evening I managed to invite myself along for a sneak blogger’s preview of this year’s venue for the Hidden Door Arts festival – and the space and art taking shape there is incredible.


Hidden Door is a not for profit arts festival that takes place in abandoned or hidden places in Edinburgh. Last year they transformed the Market Street Vaults, and this year they’ve one-upped themselves with the amazing ‘secret courtyard’ of a disused building in the Grassmarket.


On the Hidden Door website, they describe it as:

“The old street lighting depot on Kings Stables Road, right in the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town, just off the Grassmarket. Invisible to passers-by, this intriguing complex of buildings centers around a large overgrown courtyard and comprises of a quirky range of rooms, hangers and old workshops.”


The place really is bloody perfect for this purpose, and a fascinating place to explore. If you’re in Edinburgh you owe it to yourself to check it out! Alas the building is to be developed into student flats next year so this is the only chance for it to be used for the benefit of the city’s artistic community.


It was great to have the opportunity to see some of the artists at work and have a wee chat with them. There were so many interesting nooks and crannies I could have spent hours there taking photos.  I’m looking forward to going back on Friday night for a gig and seeing how things have progressed.


The festival runs for 9 days and nights, from today (Friday 22nd May) until Saturday 30th May. You can go along for free until 6pm  and after that time there are loads of events, encompassing music, visual art, cinema and theatre.


In the meantime, I hope you enjoy these photos of the space from Wednesday evening. It was still being set up by the amazing team of volunteers and artists, which led to some nice behind the scenes shots. I was blown away by the amount of hard work they’ve all put in to making this happen.


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Hidden Door really need your support to make all this effort worthwhile. You can support them by buying tickets to festival events or contributing to their crowdfunding campaign (you can get lots of goodies in return).

Info and tickets:

See also: 9 shows to catch at Hidden Door Festival (

Update: Launch Night pics

Another wee gallery from the first night where we saw Jonnie Common and Lonelady play live (both were excellent).

It’s been amazing to see the venue come to life and I’m hoping to explore more before the festival ends on Saturday 30th May. (Click individual photos to see them full size).

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