Curtain up on Scottish theatre exhibition
Larger John Byrne photo
Scotland's rich and vibrant theatre scene takes centre stage at the National Library of Scotland this winter.
'Curtain up' is our new exhibition, celebrating the achievements in Scottish theatre over the past 40 years.
Props, costumes, posters and film clips help take visitors on take a thematic journey starting from the early 1970s. Included are items linked with famous names such Alan Cumming, David Tennant, Tony Roper and John Byrne
From 'Cheviot' to 'Black Watch'
Featured from 1973 is John McGrath's groundbreaking play, 'The Cheviot, the Stag and the Black, Black Oil', first performed by the 7:84 company. From 7:84 Scotland's archive at NLS comes the 'pop-up book' set for 'Cheviot, designed by John Byrne and used by the company when the play toured Scotland.
Courtesy National Theatre
Larger 'Black Watch' photo
Coming into the 21st century, we look at the forming of the National Theatre of Scotland in 2006, and its internationally successful production of 'Black Watch'.
Visitors get the chance to be a theatre critic and share their views on plays that have had an impact on them. Our winter events programme also includes a series of talks and panel discussions in association with the exhibition.
'Curtain up' is free and runs until 3 May. See the theatre exhibition page for more information, including opening times.
18 December 2009
Archive films in Jackie Stewart exhibition
Photo © Sean Bell, courtesy of
National Museums Scotland.
Three films from the National Library of Scotland feature in an Edinburgh exhibition focusing on Sir Jackie Stewart OBE.
The three-times Formula One world racing champion is the subject of a 'Famous Scots' exhibition at the ScotlandsPeople Centre during Homecoming Scotland 2009. This is the last exhibition in a series of six, each focusing on one well-known Scottish figure. All six have included films supplied from the Scottish Screen Archive at NLS which have proved to be a popular attraction.
Born in Dumbarton, Sir Jackie is descended from many generations of farmers on both sides of his family. Visitors to the exhibition can watch films that depict village life, farming and Dunbartonshire industries:
- 'Fenwick Events of 1931' (1931) includes shots of a farm in the parish next to Eaglesham, where Sir Jackie's grandparents, and previous generations, farmed.
- 'They Made the Land' (1938) shows something of the kind of farming life that Sir Jackie's grandparents would have experienced.
- 'County of Dunbarton' (1947) reveals various aspects of the area Sir Jackie grew up in.
The Jackie Stewart exhibition at New Register House runs until 31 December.
11 December 2009
Awards roll in for NLS magazine
The National Library of Scotland's free quarterly magazine has scooped two prestigious publishing prizes.
'Discover NLS' was voted 'Customer Magazine of the Year' at the Scottish Magazine Awards organised by the magazine trade association PPA. Judges described the magazine as 'strong, well designed and packaged with fabulous information which breathes life into history'.
At the CorpComms awards, 'Discover NLS' took the title of 'Best Corporate Publication' for a non-profit and public sector organisation in the UK. Other winners on the night included Marks & Spencer, National Grid, Macmillan and Unilever.
The magazine was also shortlisted for the 'Customer Magazine of the Year' at the UK-wide Independent Publisher Awards.
NLS Director of Customer Services Alexandra Miller said of the awards:
'This success is a tribute to the wonders of our great collections and to our colleagues all over the Library who play a part in making them accessible. We are also grateful to our external contributors who have shared their passion for our collections with our readers. We regularly receive very positive feedback on the magazine from readers in Scotland and around the world.'
'Discover NLS' is produced for the Library by Glasgow-based publishers Think Scotland.
Read the magazine awards press release
11 December 2009
Annual Review for 2008-2009 goes online
The NLS Annual Review for the year 2008-2009 has now been published. For the first time, the document is available online only. Also new for this year's review are short films focusing on a particular collection, project, or service.
Highlights from the past financial year include Sir Sean Connery's visit to our exhibition about 500 years of printing in Scotland. Among items we added to the collections were a Robert Burns manuscript and photo albums and plans complied by archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann.
The decision to provide only a digital version of this year's Annual Review comes in response to customer feedback. It is also in line with our move towards delivering more material and services online.
11 December 2009