Edinburgh International Festival Society

Edinburgh International Festival Society

Charity information

Edinburgh International Festival Society

Our mission is to be the most exciting, innovative and accessible Festival of the performing arts in the world.

Founded 1947

  • Mission statement

    Every August, the Edinburgh International Festival transforms one of the world's most beautiful cities, presenting three exhilarating weeks of the finest creators and performers from the worlds of the arts - for everyone. Edinburgh's six major theatres and concert halls, a few smaller venues and often some unconventional ones too, come alive with the best classical music, theatre, opera, dance and visual art from around the globe.

    The atmosphere in the city is something special. The Daily Telegraph said - ‘not just the most thrilling, beguiling, preposterously enjoyable place on Earth; it is also wonderfully addictive. ' Or as The Spectator suggested, ‘you can sleep in September'.

    Outside the buzz of those three weeks the Festival has a year-round programme of education and outreach work, aimed at all ages from primary school pupils to adults.

    History: Edinburgh International Festival has been connecting audiences and artists for over sixty years. Founded in 1947, the Festival grew out of the rubble of the Second World War with the aim of providing 'a platform for the flowering of the human spirit'. This belief in the power of the arts to nurture and transform lies at the heart of the Festival's mission today.

    The Edinburgh International Festival was the first of its kind. Today there are major festivals around the world modelled on the Edinburgh International Festival and the extraordinary experiences it creates for both audiences and artists.

    Creating a Festival: Edinburgh International Festival is a curated festival - all artists and companies appear in the Festival at the invitation of the Festival Director. There have been ten directors since the Festival began, each bringing their own style and interests. The current Festival Director is Jonathan Mills.

    All artists and companies in the Festival appear at the invitation of the Festival Director. The Festival's budget covers all of the costs associated with delivering the programme including artists' fees and travel, venue hire and promotion of the event. The Festival, a not-for-profit organisation, is solely responsible for raising income from ticket sales, fundraising and sponsorship, which along with public sector grants, cover these costs.

  • Aims

    Edinburgh International Festival Society aims to:

    • Presenting arts of the highest possible international standard to the widest possible audience
    • Reflecting international culture to audiences from Scotland, the rest of the UK and the world
    • Offering an international showcase for Scottish culture
    • Presenting events which cannot easily be achieved by any other UK arts organisation through innovative programming and a commitment to new work
    • Actively ensuring equal opportunities for all sections of the Scottish and wider public to experience and enjoy the Festival
  • Overview

    Established: August 1947

    Phone number: 0131 473 2062

    Address: Edinburgh International Festival, The Hub, Castlehill, Edinburgh, EH1 2NE

    View charity accounts on the Scottish Charity Commission website