Macaskill: Ruthless SNP machine will shield Sturgeon at all costs
●Former justice secretary attacks party over loyalty to its key members
An inner circle of hardliners surrounding Nicola Sturgeon are “driving out” anyone who threatens to damage the SNP leader’s public reputation, former justice secretary Kenny Macaskill writes in today’s Scotsman.
In his opinion column, Mr Macaskill calls into question the party’s treatment of Alex Salmond over his sexual harassment case, accusing senior figures of a “prejudicial and unfair” approach in order to protect the current First Minister. Mr Macaskill was at Mr Salmond’s side in the Court of Session in Edinburgh this week as the former SNP leader won a dramatic victory against the Scottish Government over its handling of a sexual harassment inquiry into accusations against him.
The former justice minister is one of Mr Salmond’s closest political allies and his intervention in The Scotsman today will further inflame the deteriorating relations between Mr Salmond and Ms Sturgeon.
“It now seems that, for a coterie
She has helped the likes of Bill Bailey, Peter Kay, Tim Minchin, Russell Brand, Ford Kiernan, Greg Hemphill and Dylan Moran make their names in the world of comedy at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Now Edinburgh promoter Karen Koren is aim to kickstart a revival of the city’s live music scene, by staging regular gigs in the city’s west end.
The new venture from Gilded Balloon, the company she now runs with her daughter, Katy, will be based in an underground venue on Rose Street.
It is hoped the advent of the Gilded Balloon Basement will help offset the impact of the “rapid and wide-ranging closure” of venues across the city.
Karen Koren also showcased acts like Flight of the Conchords, Alan Cumming, KT Tunstall and The Rubberbandits in Edinburgh when they were unknown.
Bluegrass, jazz, soul, blues, folk and roots music acts are being lined up to appear in the venue. It was first used by Gilded Balloon for the 2017 Fringe after it joined forces with Danish ballet dancer and choreographer Peter Schaufuss – who owns the the former Charlotte Baptist Chapel – to programme shows under the banner of the Rose Theatre.
It is the first year-round venue Gilded Balloon has run since the demise of its longtime home in the Cowgate in a major blaze in 2002.
Karen Koren said: “It’s really important for us to put on all kinds of entertainment all year round at the Rose Theatre, from theatre, comedy and spoken word to live music. We want the venue to be allencompassing.
“I’m really exciting about doing these new live music nights as it’s the kind of thing we used to have year-round in our Cowgate venue.”
Katy Koren said: “We hope our new weekly night will inspire more and more people to support and involve themselves in the revitalisation of Edinburgh’s music scene.”
Among the acts lined up to appear initially are Hannah Rarity, the current BBC Scotland Young Musician of the Year, Radio 2 Folk Awards winner Rachel Newton, and Scots Singer of the Year Iona Fyfe.
0 Karen Koren is aim to ‘kickstart a revival of live music’