A CLASSICAL guitarist is set to represent his country at the Fringe – and then potentially play at festivals across the globe.
Simon Thacker’s Ritmata is part of the prestigious Made in Scotland showcase during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Through Made in Scotland, promoters from major festivals in New Zealand, Brazil, China, the USA, India and more are all coming to see the show.
Simon, from Pencaitland, will be joined by Paul Harrison (piano), Mario Caribé (bass) and Stu Brown (drums/percussion) at the six concerts at The Cafe, Summerhall.
The concerts are held at 9.30pm August 15-17 and 21-23.
The 35-year-old said: “It is a very prestigious showcase of every form of art.
“To have that opportunity is pretty special for me.” The Made in Scotland Showcase features imaginative Scottish practitioners in music, dance and drama and is a curated showcase in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
It is supported through the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, with the full programme recently launched by Fiona Hyslop, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs.
It is hoped that scheme could see artists who impress heading out to other festivals across the world.
Simon was hopeful a positive impression would see him performing at major foreign festivals.
He is no stranger to The Fringe, having played there off and on since 2000.
The musician, who has played with several ensembles and has previously been nominated for a Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award, said: “It’s always a big deal and the atmosphere is just mayhem for the entire month.
“But this time I’m feeling more pressure because I am showcasing new work, which I have written especially for the festival and will be on the debut album.” His interest in music came at an early age, when he attended Pencaitland Primary School.
The school’s headteacher would teach pupils chords on the guitar but, being left-handed, Simon struggled.
Instead, it was only when he picked up a Jimi Hendrix tape from Haddington Library that his love of music began to grow.
With a left-handed guitar, he began to learn more about music while at Knox Academy, including the history of musical styles such as flamenco and blues.