Anatomy is an arts producer based in Edinburgh, Scotland. Our core events are our famous sell-out quarterly cabarets, which feature every three months a wild variety of performance acts from Scotland and further afield. Alongside these, we run matinee performance art events for the early years audience, champion disability accessibility in the arts and the integration of disability arts, and run prestige events for venues and festivals around Scotland and further afield.
Anatomy was founded by Ali Maloney and Harry Josephine Giles after a meeting they had to moan about the lack of platforms in Edinburgh for the kind of art they really liked. They decided to make it happen themselves instead. Beginning with no budget and a lot of goodwill, they started organising sprawling multi-artform cabarets, always programmed by open call, which brought together artists and audiences from many different disciplines. The first cabaret sold every ticket, and so has almost every cabaret since.
In 2013-14, Brian Hutchison joined the team as our regular Technical Director, and Anatomy added to the core programme with special events for a range of programmers around Scotland, including to thousands of audience members at Edinburgh Zoo Nights and Assembly George Square’s Fringe programming (for which they put on a durational performance art peep show).
In 2016, trying to find a more sustainable footing for their work, which had til then been mostly unpaid, Anatomy began a programme funded by Creative Scotland, which continued in 2017. With this programme, Anatomy sought to build a bridge between grassroots and professional performing arts, providing a platform for emerging and established artists to mingle, learn from each other, and try out new work. We also began to champion disability accessibility, with a funded strand to improve accessibility to grassroots events, and outreach and infrastructure work to integrate disability arts into the core cabarets. At the same time, we began partnering with Imaginate to run avant garde cabarets for toddlers, deciding that what their young minds really needed was performance art. (No, really, try it.)
We have produced the first scratch performances of work from Melanie Jordan and Caitlin Skinner, Sanitise, and from Will Pickvance, Anatomy of a Piano, both of which won Fringe First awards and tour widely. We have also supported artists such as Moreno Solinas and Jack Webb at earlier career stages who have now gone on to tour internationally. At the same time, we’ve continued to nurture grassroots artists in Sotland, ensuring that the roots of the scene remain fertile.
In 2017, we took on a Production and Marketing Director, Melanie Purdie and constituted as a Workers’ Co-operative Community Interest Company, meaning that we are non-profit and owned and managed democratically by our workers. In 2019, we’re seeking to grow and diversify our audiences, stage more prestige events to introduce bigger crowds to our strange ways, consolidate our position in the Scottish Arts, and make our work sustainable into the future, so that we can continue to bring Edinburgh (and Scotland, and the UK, and the world) the best and strangest in the live arts.
- Harry Josephine Giles (Artistic and Adminastrative Director)
- Brian Hutchison (Technical Director)
- Ali Maloney (Artistic Director)
- Melanie Purdie (Production and Marketing Director
The Anatomy logo is by Catherine Street, and all photographs are (c) Rich Dyson unless otherwise stated.