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New arts cafe planned for former cinema in Leith

New arts cafe planned for former cinema in Leith

Sketching is seen as a quiet pursuit, with the scratching of pencil against paper the only sound to punctuate the silence.

But Cosima Canneti doesn't like to stick to convention, combining music and dance for an art class with a difference at Sketchy Beats.

Launching as a monthly arts event at the Yellow Bench Cafe in Leith eight months ago, the event has grown in popularity allowing Cosima to open her own arts cafe.

Opening in the former cinema on Great Junction Street, she will open her own cafe following working for Italian institution Valvona and Crolla.

  (© Cosima Canneti)
via STV via STV

“I'd been looking on and off but I've been working full-time at Valvona and Crolla for the past two years,” Cosima said.

“I've always known that I wanted to set up my own place so I've always been looking out for properties.

“This seemed like a really good venue and I could afford it, so I just jumped at it.

“I want to host arts events, not just visual art but also literature and music.”

Cosima Canneti

The concept of Sketchy Beats incorporates a three-hour event with sketchers drawing the evening's entertainment.

The new cafe will allow her sketching night to switch from a monthly to weekly format while inviting artists and musicians across the city to host events and collaborations.

“I think I'll do Sketchy Beats once a week,” Cosima said.

“On the other nights I have a friend who has been organising open mic sound sessions who lives really close, so he's interested in doing that each week.

“I've got another friend who wants to organise a poetry open mic session where people get up and read out their poetry to a room of people they don't know to gain confidence.

"I want to host a lot of different events."

  (© Cosima Canneti)
via STV via STV

Opening from 12pm daily, the venue will also operate as a cafe with drinks and light bites on the menu inspired by her time living in Italy.

“I'll make sandwiches with fresh bread, nice ingredients and salads," Cosima explained.

“I'm going to have an electric grill so I can griddle vegetables and make antipasti style dishes.

“I lived in Sicily so learnt a few of those dishes while I was over there."

Now with the venue secured and hopes to open in mid-October, Cosima has launched a crowdfunding campaign with the aim of raising £4000 to help with refurbishing and start-up costs.

You can keep up-to-date with Sketchy Beats opening via the cafe’s Facebook page.

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