After many years attending the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, and seeing highly original theatre, I had an idea to give an award to at least one new play every year, and bring it to New York.
This prize, called the Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award, was presented for the first time in 2004, and, in a formal agreement with the Festival, will be given annually, in perpetuity.
The Edinburgh Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world. The Tambor Award is presented at The Scotsman newspaper’s final award ceremony, which is covered by the international press.
The award is considered the top prize at the Fringe because it gives something new to Festival participants – a next step for their careers: a New York premiere for their production. The prize pays all expenses, including transportation for the cast, crew and props to and from New York, visa expenses, the cast and crew’s stay in New York, publicity and theatre expenses.
All productions given 4 or 5 stars by The Scotsman’s reviewers are eligible for the award, as long as they are new to New York.
The New York run often coincides with the Association of Performing Arts Presenters convention, which brings some 4,000 producers and presenters to New York City.
The Foundation makes this award with no commercial interest in the play, for current or future production.
The international press has reported extensively about the Award, including major feature articles in The New York Times, The Herald, plus the International Herald Tribune, the BBC and Backstage. In fact, the Award was the subject of a Scotsman editorial regarding novel approaches for promoting the arts. The actual, physical award is a hand engraved crystal block with the images of Scotland and the United States intertwined.