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My Light Shines On: Ghost Light by Hope Dickson Leach

National Theatre of Scotland

National Theatre of Scotland performs a poetic tribute to the art of theatre-making on an empty stage at the Festival Theatre.

As a part of My Light Shines On, the Edinburgh International Festival has commissioned some of Scotland’s major national artistic companies to create extraordinary works that audiences can enjoy from their own homes. In celebration of our Festival City, they bring light and life to sites that must stay empty this year with unique theatrical performances created for film and insights from artists. 

You can watch now Ghost Light and other films as part of My Light Shines On on the Edinburgh International Festival's YouTube channel.


Ghost Light is a love letter from the National Theatre of Scotland, evoking moments from Scottish theatrical performances past, present and future with works from writers including J.M. Barrie, David Greig, Rona Munro and Jackie Kay, and original composition by Patricia Panther. On a vacant stage stands a single light bulb. It is known as a ghost light; lit by the last person to leave the venue and extinguished by the first to arrive. Its constant illumination represents the enduring spirit of theatre in dark times. As we follow the ghost light, it reveals plays and performances that remain alive in the memories of the audiences who loved them, as well as new works reminding us of theatre that will soon return to stages. We encounter members of a phantom cast and crew, who reignite the magic of theatre and celebrate all those who create it. 

An outstanding cast of Scottish actors includes James McArdle, Siobhán Redmond, Thierry Mabonga and Anna Russell-Martin. Award-winning filmmaker Hope Dickson Leach and National Theatre of Scotland’s Artistic Director Jackie Wylie have collaborated with dramaturg Philip Howard to conceive this celebration of theatre on film.

This piece contains strong language.

Please find the Audio Described version of this performance performance below. It is also available on our YouTube Channel.

Audio Described
There is an Audio Described video of this performance on this page and available on our YouTube channel
This video is captioned

National Theatre of Scotland in association with Selkie Productions 

Jackie Wylie Artistic Director (National Theatre of Scotland)
Philip Howard Dramaturg
Hope Dickson Leach Director & Screenwriter
Wendy Griffin Producer
Kate Reid Director of Photography
Becky Minto Designer
Simon Starling Editor
Patricia Panther Music Director & Composer
Ania Przygoda Sound Designer 

Afton Moran
Thierry Mabonga
James McArdle
Anna Russell-Martin
Louise Charity
Kiruna Stamell
Mark Pringle
Hannah Donaldson
Taqi Nazeer
Emilie Patry
Adam Kashmiry
Hannah Lavery
Gail Watson
Natalie MacDonald
Richard Conlon
Matthew Duckett
Siobhán Redmond
Dylan Read

8-31 August 2020

This event was part of a previous International Festival and is therefore unavailable to book or watch. The 2021 programme will be announced in June.