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Power Plant

Assembly @ Royal Botanic Garden
12 - 30 Aug (not 17, 18, 24), 9:30pm to 11:20pm (timed admission, show lasts 40 minutes)

Oh look, it's one of these: an immersive, night-time art installation, promising a magical journey of sound and light, thread through an enchanted landscape in the city's Botanic Garden.  If you've been around the Festival track as often as we have, you'll recognize this genre as a risky one.  But banish that cynicism; with Power Plant, we think we've been dealt a winning hand.

Power PlantOn the installation's last outing, at Liverpool's City of Culture celebrations, the Sunday Times praised its "air of amused mystery"; its "ingeniously playful" array of gizmos wowed local families for the whole of its five-day run.  There were pipe tunes played by vacuum cleaners, mechanical insects, a row of talking lamp-shades and plenty of pyrotechnics. The assorted installations played with sound, light and technology, all framed by the natural backdrop of a city garden and to the delight of adults and children alike.

Events like Power Plant suffer two big problems: the weather, and the crowds.  So we're delighted to see that most of the work will be safely undercover, in the impressive Victorian glasshouses of Edinburgh's Botanic Garden - and that timed entry tickets will be used to make sure everyone has a chance to enjoy the experience to the full.  It's, we admit, a fair old trip from the city out to the Garden... but we think it'll be worth the journey, for the type of weird and wonderful event only found at a Festival.

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