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Amnesty Freedom of Expression Award 2015 Shortlist Announced

Seven powerful productions at Edinburgh Festival Fringe chosen for shortlist



A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing
Counting Stars
Fake It ‘til You Make It
Smash It Up
Tar Baby
Trans Scripts

Amnesty International has chosen seven outstanding Edinburgh Festival Fringe productions for the shortlist of its 2015 Freedom of Expression Award. The Award, given annually to an outstanding Fringe production with a strong human rights message, has celebrated more than a decade of excellence in theatre in Edinburgh.

Naomi McAuliffe, Amnesty International Scotland Programme Director said:
“This impressive shortlist is a true reflection of the themes woven through this year’s programme at the Fringe but they also hold a mirror to the political confusion and erosion of our basic rights and freedoms that we are witnessing here in the UK and around the world. Great human rights theatre should move us, inform us and even disturb us – the shows we have shortlisted certainly achieve that.”

The shortlisted productions are:
A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing– Traverse Theatre
Produced by The Corn Exchange in association with Cusack Projects Ltd. Directed by Annie Ryan. Written by Eimear McBride and adapted for stage by Annie Ryan. Performed by Aoife Duffin.

Counting Stars – Assembly George Square Studios
Produced by Scott Hurran for Ecclesia Theatre. Directed by Scott Hurran. Written by Atiha Sen Gupta. Performed by Bunmi Mojekwu and Joe Shire.

Fake It ‘til You Make It Traverse Theatre
Produced by Soho Theatre. Directed by Bryony Kimmings. Written and performed by Bryony Kimmings and Tim Grayburn.

Labels Pleasance Courtyard
Produced by Michael Woodman and Worklight Theatre. Directed by Katharina Reinthaller. Written and performed by Joe Sellman-Leava.

Smash It Up Summerhall
Produced by Mr and Mrs Clark Productions. Directed by Gareth Clark, Marega Palser & Catherine Bennett. Written by Gareth Clark, Mr and Mrs Clark and Bosch. Performed by Gareth Clark, Marega Palser and Steven George Jones.

Tar Baby Gilded Balloon
Produced by Platt Productions. Directed by Melissa Crespo. Written by Desiree Burch with Dan Kitrosser. Performed by Desiree Burch.

Trans Scripts Pleasance Courtyard
Produced by Paul Lucas Productions, Gail Winar and Pleasance Theatre. Directed by Linda Ames Kelly. Written by Paul Lucas. Dramaturg Morgan Jenness. Performed by Calpernia Addams, Carolyn Michelle Smith, Catherine Fitzgerald, Jay Knowles, Bianca Leigh, Rebecca Root and Gail Winar.  

Amnesty’s involvement with the world’s largest arts festival is based on the celebration of freedom of expression and campaigning for the rights of people whose free speech is denied.

Amnesty’s 2015 Edinburgh Festival Campaign is for imprisoned cartoonist 29-year-old Atena Farghadani. In June, Iran sentenced Atena to more than 12 years in prison, after a trial that lasted just half an hour – the only 'evidence' against her extracted under interrogation.  We are calling on Iran to release her. Sign our petition to Free Atena:

Notes to Editors
Entries for the Freedom of Expression Award are visited by Amnesty International reviewers and a panel of professional theatre critics.
The judging panel comprises: Joyce McMillan of the Scotsman, Neil Cooper of the Herald, Catherine Love of FEST Magazine, Stephanie Knight, an independent artist-researcher and Naomi McAuliffe, Amnesty International Scotland, Programme Director.

Pictures of the award ceremony available on request

For further media information please contact: Pauline Kelly Amnesty Scotland: 07818 453 070

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