Entertainment in Edinburgh

Theatre, Opera, Museum in Edinburgh

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Glasgow is generally attributed with a fuller nightlife, but Edinburgh also has an excellent arts community. In festival season, the city is overrun with theatre groups and displays by the arts. Outside of the high time, Edinburgh continues to support a number of theatres and production companies.


  • Edinburgh Playhouse is Europe's largest theatre with 3,000 seats. Has a large touring show in addition.
  • The Festival Theatre in Old Town also hosts opera and ballet.
  • Bedlam Theatre Features inexpensive, but good quality student theatre from Edinburgh University Theatre Company (EUTC). Also offers Scotland's oldest improvised comedy troupe, The Improverts.
  • The Royal Lyceum Theatre is a large theatre with its own company. Many productions are put on throughout the year, with seasonal specialities during holidays.
  • The Traverse Theatre presents a contemporary program of plays.

A theatre guide is available on Edinburgh Guide.


The Scottish Opera is Scotland's national opera company. It was founded by Sir Alexander Gibson and began it's illustrious career with a production of Madam Butterfly. The theatre is located in Glasgow. Their site offers a complete schedule and details about the performances.

Edinburgh Grand Opera is run by dedicated amateurs who are fully involved in fund raising and decision making.


Usher Hall is the premier venue for classical music with weekly orchestral concerts with the Royal Scottish National Orchestra.

The Queen's Hall is home to the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. The program offers a wide range of events from classical to jazz to pop to comedy.


Scotland guards and reveres its historical monuments and artefacts. They are showcased throughout the country in a variety of national museums and independent galleries.

St. Stephen Street area of is home to Scotland's five National Galleries as well as many small galleries. There are several organizations dedicated to preserving the local art including Creative Scotland, Edinburgh College of Art, and the Edinburgh Annuale.

National Museum of Scotland
The national collection celebrates Scotland's history and innovation in architecture. Features a Millennium Clock that is an exhibit in itself when it chimes. Exhibits also include Scottish pottery and weapons from the Roman era and the Renaissance.
Admission is free.

The National Gallery of Scotland
This gallery holds many of Scotland's finest art works. Exhibitions change seasonally. It adjoins with the neighbouring Scottish Academy gallery.
Admission is free.

The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and Dean Gallery
Contains a selection of modern Scottish art, as well as works from other countries.
Admission is free.

The Scottish National Portrait Gallery
Focusing on portraits and photography, The Scottish National Portrait Gallery opened to the public in 1889 and is the first purpose-built portrait gallery in the world.
Admission is free.

The Fruitmarket Gallery
A non-profit organization and registered charity that all facets of art in both print and electronic forms. Works are presented by British and international artists with both emerging and established international reputations.
Admission is free.

The Hunterarian
Part of the University of Glasgow, this is the oldest public museum in Scotland. Exhibits include information about the Romans in Scotland and Leckie Broth.
Admission is free.

For more information on museums in Scotland and upcoming exhibits, check out the website

Update 5/12/2016


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