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Press Release

QMU drama lecturer wins Fringe First with her Allotment

Kate Nelson, lecturer in drama and performance at QMU, has won a Fringe First for her play ‘Allotment’.

Kate, who sacrificed her prize globe artichoke bed to accommodate actors and the audience, staged her award winning play on her very own allotment in Inverleith.

Audiences were treated to a truly unique artistic experience with the show kicking off with the distribution of steaming hot cups of tea accompanied with freshly baked scones smeared with homemade damson jam. The staging, which involved no lighting or protection from the elements, presented a truly earthy setting in which to experience the performance.

Edinburgh Fringe audiences are, by now, used to viewing performances in unusual venues, but this was probably the first time that guests were to be found jostling for position amongst the courgettes, strawberries, beetroots and raspberries whilst watching the delights of the tale unfold.

‘Allotment’, by the acclaimed Scottish writer, Jules Horne, and directed by QMU’s Kate Nelson with set design from QMU’s Sarah Paulley, Programme Leader for Costume Design & Construction, centred around two green fingered sisters, Dora and Maddy who live out their rivalry amongst the plants.

A darkly comic story, ‘Allotment’ is promoted as a feast for the senses - a tale of life, death, Pink Fir apples and the secret power of worms.

The idea came to Kate during last year's festival when, after days taking in a host of shows, she returned to her allotment for some respite. It was at this point, she became aware that the allotment had its own dramas. She said: “People do come here to dig furiously, to work things out," she said.

Kate has been delighted that Edinburgh City Council and her fellow gardeners have been extremely accommodating and supportive of the project. However, the audience was warned at the start of the performance, that they mustn’t give in to temptation and nick the veggies from other gardeners’ plots!

Allotment was performed by Nutshell Theatre at Assembly: Inverleith Allotments, Edinburgh. For further information visit :


For further information please contact Lynne Russell, Press and PR Officer, Queen Margaret University, tel: 0131 474 0000, mob: 07711 011 239.







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