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George Alden

August 4, 1940 – August 27, 2008

" George was enormously influential in creating a platform for my work.   Initially it was through my involvement with folk music that I met George - at that time an enthusiastic and impressive singer himself -  it was he who first suggested that I do something at the Fringe, expecting that this would be in a solo capacity as a singer/songwriter.   As it turned out, I eventually arrived in Edinburgh with a 15 strong company of actors, musicians and technicians, and a triple bill of plays that needed presenting, promoting and nurturing over a two week run.    Without George arranging and handling all the Edinburgh side of things, we’d never have been able to open when we did and with the solid streak of confidence that George inspired.   Marshalling the skills and talents of others on the ground – Celia, Dick and Mae Hendry, Brian Blind Scouse posterMelville and co, (and whilst maintaining his day job at the Museum ) George worked minor miracles, accommodating us all, building a stage in a venue which, only at the last minute, was found to be without one, constantly appeasing and smoothing the easily ruffled feathers of venue owners who were beginning to question the wisdom of allowing their Masonic premises to be turned into a play house by a bunch of below-the-border hooligans. Without ever having signed up for any of it George became our protector, our production manager, our host, our guide. And for me he became one of a handful of life-long friends. After our show left town, George continued his work in numismatics and along with Celia, raised the splendid duo of Gillie and Philip. We never worked together in theatre again. But we played poker, swapped many a tale, ate some blistering curries, confessed our fears and bared our souls. I’m proud to have been his friend.”

George Alden

George - centre, with sheet of paper - backstage at The Rifle Lodge, Edinburgh, 1972, giving notes to ( L to R ) Paul Wilkinson, Alan Steven and Steve Wilson.

 

 

 

 

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