PREVIEW – Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2011/2012

Hogmanay Fireworks

Hogmanay Fireworks

Every year at Hogmanay, the eyes of the world look to Edinburgh for an example of how to bring the new year in with a bang. This year will be no exception, as the stroke of midnight will see the longest running firework display yet staged in the celebrations’ 19-year history.

Auld acquaintances - Frisky & Mannish

Auld acquaintances - Frisky & Mannish

That will be preceded – and followed – by the much-loved Street Party which this year features headliners Primal Scream and The Vaccines; as well as more traditional fare from Capercaillie and Peatbog Faeries. The seven music stages in and around Princes St Gardens will provide entertainment for all tastes – our friends and Fringe favourites Frisky & Mannish will even be putting in a poptastic appearance!

With the world’s largest rendition of Auld Lang Syne, the outdoor Keilidh in the Gardens, and an aftershow party at the HMV Picture House: this year’s Street Party looks set to be one of the biggest and best yet! And even those unable to attend in person can get in on the fun, as this year the celebration will be streamed live on the web for the first time.

Those seeking music of a more classical kind are also catered for, with a Candlelit Concert at St Giles’ Cathedral at 7.30pm on the 31st, where the sounds of the cathedral’s organ and choir will bid farewell to 2011 to the music of Handel and Mozart.

On the night before Hogmanay itself, the popular Torchlight Procession returns, getting the new year celebrations off to a fiery start with a procession from the Royal Mile to Calton Hill, where a stunning son et lumière show will entertain the torch-carrying crowds.

Then, for those still feeling like some fun after the 31st, 2012 sees the inaugural New Year Games taking place on the afternoon of 1st January, where Scottish artists and game designers Hide & Seek will use Edinburgh as a giant playground in a friendly battle between the Uppies and the Doonies.

Traditional Hogmanay street games will be reinterpreted with giant boardgames, secret missions and more, at installations in St Giles’ Cathedral, Dancebase, The Hub and the National Museum of Scotland. This event sounds like it will be the perfect way to see in 2012 with some fun and games!

The Loony Dook

The Loony Dook

Or, if you’re feeling hardier, you could always take a dip in the January waters of the Forth, at the famous Loony Dook in South Queensferry. Or, like us, watch them from one of the many vantage points then retire somewhere cosy for a New Year pick-me-up!

The Filmhouse are also celebrating Hogmanay with Let’s Play Film, a homage to Edinburgh as inspiration to movies, with showings of Trainspotting, The 39 Steps and more – including what promises to be a fascinating showing of some rare Edinburgh archive footage on 1st January at 4pm.

Music, movies, fireworks, fun & games: Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 2011/2012 looks all set to live up to its tagline this year: Let’s Play!

Full details of all events can be found on the Edinburgh Hogmanay website

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