Dunfermline Town

Outwith Festival

From: Thursday, 7 September 2017 to Sunday, 10 September 2017

Outwith Festival 5-9th September 2018

Dunfermline’s Outwith Festival is delighted to report the success of this year’s town centre five-day arts programme. Dunfermline Delivers has commissioned independent research to measure the economic impact of the Festival but early indicators show sold out performances, venues also report their busiest weekend during the trading year and hotels were at maximum occupancy. This year the programme had added an extra day and doubled in size, clocking up 120 performances in 23 town-centre venues across the five days, 5-9 September.   


Attendance figures were strong. Over 500 people attended the first pop up Dunfermline Filmhouse at Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries. 


After many years the Glen Pavilion outdoor stage came back to life with a Gala Performance by the Scottish Philharmonic Big Band. An estimated crowd of 2,000 people watched an inspiring performance of Love Hurts by Nazareth’s Dan McCafferty.  Other highlights included an orchestral rendition of Big Country’s It’s a Big Country plus movie scores from the James Bond films.  


Chris Foote, Events Manager at Dunfermline Delivers said: “This year the Festival is doing three things: first, consolidating our growing cultural offer including a thriving live music scene. Now artists, musicians and performers are approaching us and asking us if they can be part of the festival. Secondly, delivering an economic impact that will contribute to long term economic regeneration - early results from the surveys show that audiences came from across the UK as well as the rest of Scotland. Lastly, so many organisations, businesses and volunteers got involved and contributed to the Festival – it felt like the whole town was pulling together.” 


It wasn’t just audiences that travelled; musicians came from different parts of the UK to play at Outwith. Leeds band, Venus, played alongside many local bands while Dunfermline bands such as ForeignFox, Moonlight Zoo, Oskar Braves and Dancing on Tables packed out venues. 


The Royal British Legion provided a new music venue this year. The Dunfermline premiere of the Tae Sup wi’ a Fifer, the eclectic live music showcase curated by Fife-based singer-songwriter James Yorkston. The line up included some of Scotland’s most talented musicians: Rachel Sermanni,  Martin Carr, formerly Boo Radleys and Emma Pollock, formerly of The Delgados. 


Sold out events in the literature line up included entertaining performances by cameraman Doug Allan and internet sensation, Chris McQueer.  


Outwith is organized by Dunfermline Delivers with Fire Station Creative, Avocado Sweet and Write Rammy publishing.  


The Festival was funded primarily by Dunfermline Delivers, with additional funding from Fife Council, Fife Strategic Events Fund and the Carnegie Dunfermline Trust.  


In September 2017 Dunfermline Delivers, working closely with local partners, launched Dunfermline's first arts and music festival.

The four-day Outwith Festival, a wide-ranging programme of music, comedy, theatre and literature, ran from Thursday 7 - Sunday 10 September. 

There was an impressive line-up of performers and events in venues and spaces throughout the town including major international names such as artist David Mach; filmmaker, musician and local hero Richard Jobson; playwright Alan Bissett; and authors, Isla Dewar and Angela Jackson. The literary offering also included a book launch when Scots actor John Cairney read from his new book about how Andrew Carnegie was influenced by Robert Burns, The Tycoon and The Bard.

Theatre included a world premiere of Thunderstruck, a play by David Colvin, and a premiere of Stramashed Potatoes by Tom Freeman.

Comedy in the Dark, a sell-out show on London’s South Bank and a unique comedy experience where comedians perform in total darkness, and which has been described “as the most fun you can have with the lights off”, was hosted in Dunfermline's Harlem nightclub.

The music programme had over 35 bands playing at six venues in the town centre, including on a new outdoor stage in the High Street, and featured local talents such as Foreignfox, Moonlight Zoo and Dancing on Tables. 

Outwith was organised by BIDs company Dunfermline Delivers, along with arts hub Fire Station Creative and culture magazine Avocado Sweet. 



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