Cardboard Citizens launch campaign challenging Fringe audiences to no longer be Bystanders to homelessness

Cardboard Citizens Bystanders Andre
  • Campaign Citizens Do asks Fringe audiences to take direct action to help tackle homelessness in Edinburgh and beyond.
  • The campaign runs alongside Bystanders by UK’s leading homelessness theatre company Cardboard Citizens which premieres at Edinburgh Fringe.
  • Citizens Do is supported by leading local and national homeless charities; The Museum of Homelessness, Crisis, Cyrenians and Shelter Scotland.

Today, the UK’s leading homelessness theatre company Cardboard Citizens supported by local and national charities including; Crisis, Shelter Scotland, Cyrenians and The Museum of Homelessness launched Citizens Do, a campaign to challenge Edinburgh Fringe audiences to no longer be bystanders to homelessness.

The campaign calls on Fringe audiences to take a series simple actions to improve the lives of those experiencing homelessness in Edinburgh and across Scotland. Participants who sign up to support Citizens Do will receive three daily actions ranging from the personal to the political, from buying a homelessness person a cup of tea, to signing a petition to call for the creation of a formal, unified approach to recording homeless deaths in Scotland.

Citizens Do runs alongside Bystanders, a new production at the Fringe by Cardboard Citizens which tells the true-life stories around homeless lives and deaths and the causes of both. After last year’s revelations by The Bureau for Investigative Journalism on the largely unreported and unrecorded scale of homeless deaths in the UK – with the staggering reality of 800 homeless men and women having died between October 2017 and March 2019 –Bystanders gives those unheard voices the stage in true-life stories told with authenticity, wit and sadness.

The combined objective of Bystanders and the Citizens Do campaign is to challenge audiences to no longer see homeless people as invisible, or consider homelessness as an inevitable problem. Audiences are called on to take direct action collectively to improve the lives of homeless people, to be more than just a bystander.

Michael Chandler, Director of Social Change, Cardboard Citizens said: “Through signing up to Citizens Do, we hope our audiences will go out and make a difference in Edinburgh at what can be a challenging time of year in the city. We hope that this campaign can inspire Fringe audiences to take small, achievable actions to improve the lives of some of Edinburgh’s most vulnerable residents, and perhaps be inspired to make a change in the cities and towns where they live.”

Ewan Aitken, CEO, Cyrenians, said: “Cardboard Citizens do amazing work raising awareness of the tough realities of homelessness through their fantastic productions, with Bystanders promising to be an unmissable show this summer.

We’re delighted that they’re using this opportunity and the considerable platform provided by the Fringe to give audiences a means to help those affected by homelessness. Join us by signing up to the Citizens Do Campaign and help make a real and lasting difference.”

Jon Sparkes, Chief Executive, Crisis, said: “When some people are struggling, it has an impact on our whole society – and when people are dying because of homelessness, we know things have to change. That’s why it’s imperative that we all work together to end homelessness for good. The Citizens Do campaign inspires us all to take action – whether that’s stopping for a chat with someone sleeping rough and offering to buy them a coffee or sandwich, or tackling the root causes of homelessness. We know that homelessness isn’t inevitable – and together, we can end it once and for all.”

Citizens Do is live now and participants can sign up via 

The Fringe campaign is a development of an award-winning campaign launched by Cardboard Citizens at Soho Theatre, in which audience members and others sign up to receive a series of simple actions to improve the lives of homeless people. The first iteration of Citizens Do won the 2019 Best Digital Campaign award at the National Campaigner Awards, given by the Sheila McKechnie Foundation.

Bystanders runs from 31st July – 25th August, 11:30am, Summerhall (Tech Cube 0), tickets via

Taiwan Season 2019 at Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Taiwan Season 2019

For the sixth year in a row the world’s biggest arts festival features a showcase of dance and theatre direct from Taiwan.

Since its inception the Taiwan Season has gone from strength to strength. In 2019 it proudly returns to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for a sixth consecutive year with some of the best live performances being made on the island today. Drawn from an open call to practitioners of all art forms in Taiwan, and carefully curated by the key Fringe venues Dance Base and Summerhall, the season puts a spotlight on dance and theatre via a diverse quartet of uniquely entertaining productions:

*Taiwan’s award-winning Chang Dance Theatre – co-creators of 2018 Fringe hit Bon 4 Bon – return with Bout (Summerhall, July 31-Aug 25), a dance trio revealing fresh facets of fraternal conflict and bonding.

*BSL-sign language meets puppetry in Shinehouse Theatre’s Fish (Summerhall, July 31-Aug 25), anengaging, sensory piece of theatre that casts a warm light on generational differences.

*Inspired by one of Taiwan’s most beautiful Buddhist ceremonies, Floating Flowers (Dance Base, Aug 2-25) is a fabulously dynamic expression of body and spirit from Po-Cheng Tsai’s company B.Dance.

*Described by choreographer Yen-Cheng Liu as ‘a psychedelic fantasy,’ Dua Shin Te Production’sMonster (Dance Base, Aug 2-25) is a daring, intense and mind-blowing performance that questions one’s sense of self.

[Please note: No shows Monday Aug 5, 12 and 19 and, additionally, none for Monster Thursday Aug 8, 15 and 22.]

Produced and managed collaboratively by Zhong He Creative International Co., Ltd., Taiwan and Step Out Arts, UK and funded by Taiwan’s Ministry of Culture, Taiwan Season 2019 warmly invites audiences to experience a range of ideas, emotions and flavours in a hand-picked sampling of some of the most stimulating contemporary performances from Taiwan.


Assembly Festival 2019 Theatre Line-Up at Edfringe 2019

Assembly Festival 2019

Assembly Festival 2019 has announced another exciting year of theatre, from local artists to international superstars, to one-woman shows to energetic ensemble pieces.

 Standout solo performances include artist and activist Rose McGowan making her fringe debut with Rose McGowan: Planet 9 from Cloud9 Management, a show featuring memoir, music, storytelling, projections and performance. Eddie Izzard brings his Work in Progress of Eddie Izzard: Expectations of Great Expectations from Mick Perrin Worldwide. Eddie’s career spans both acting and comedy, but few know that it was actually acting that was Eddie’s first love. And the Assembly Roxy Theatre (ART) Award 2019 winner Elfie Picket presents Ane City. Tay attempts to find herself in the City of Dundee, in a theatrical, poetic show, that combines elements of Scots language, storytelling, song and comedy.

 After winning a string of awards in 2018, Raw Material and Traverse Theatre Company in association with Regular Music bring Cora Bissett’s rollercoaster journey What Girls Are Made Of  to Assembly Hall.

Disruptionthe future of new theatre, co-curated by HighTide and Assembly, is exclusively at Assembly Roxy this year featuring:Rust by Kenny Emson; Collapsible by Margaret Perry; Pops by Charlotte Josephine; The Queer House double bill in a co-production with HighTide present Since U Been Gone written and performed by Teddy Lamb and Pink Lemonade written and performed by Mia Johnson; and Suffering From Scottishness written and performed by Kevin P. Gilday.

The ever popular The HandleBards are cycling their way to Edinburgh once again, to present two of their famously raucous takes on Shakespeare with Much Ado About Nothing and The Tempest. There’s more Shakespeare in Romeo & Juliet from Guy Masterson – TTI in association with Maverick Theatre Co. with a fresh, feminist take on Shakespeare’s classic; and Curious Pheasant Theatre present their all male re-imagining of Romeo and Juliet.

For more classic remakes, Lyrical Therapy University + Aztec Economy present a solo-soul journey in (I)sland T(rap): The Epic Remixology of the Odyssey, and Grist to the Mill Productions present Moby Dick. Liz Lochhead’s irreverent cut of Moliere’sTartuffe is presented by Ed Littlewood Productions in Association with Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh. Americana Absurdum Productions present Brian Parks’ The Professor, a curious comedy about Dickens, shipwrecks, and the perils of original thinking, and Phil & Will present a one-man comedy Western in Gun.

From Korea, Assembly presents Spray from Cho-in Theatre Company, a dark comedic satire and Theatre Hooam return withBlack and White Tea Room – Counsellor. 

There are plenty of Musicals and Opera productions in Assembly’s jam-packed programme. With a nostalgic, 90s theme;Friendsical: A Parody Musical about Friends joins Cruel Intentions: The ‘90s Musical and Legally Blonde the MusicalThe humorous Thrones! The Musical Parody returns to Edinburgh, alongside Voldemort the Teenage Hogwarts Musical Parody.

 The National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts present Peking Opera: Farewell My Concubine, and the Shanghai Conservatory of Music present Tang and Four Dreams. David Colvin’s Thunderstruck is the tragic and comic tale of the greatest bagpiper who ever lived.

Assembly Festival presents the return of many popular shows from 2018. Smokescreen Productions return with their sell-out show Mengele, and their new show, JudasModern Māori Quartet return with their infectious show Two Worlds, while award-winning Dyad Productions (Orlando) bring DallowayA Slightly Isolated Dog (Don Juan) return with Jekyll and Hyde, a bonkers rendition of Stevenson’s classic novella.

 Shows included in the British Council Edinburgh Showcase 2019 include the return of New Perspectives Theatre Company’s The FishermenJavaad Alipoor’s The Believers Are But Brothers; and Status, from Chris Thorpe, Rachel Chavkin, China Plate and Staatstheater Mainz.

 From Guy Masterson – TTI comes Shaving the Dead from Perrier Award nominee Owen O’Neill; The Shark is Broken, in association with Shooting the Breeze; and Guys, Dolls & Pies in association with Maverick Theatre Coand PALS.

 Cahoots Theatre Company present Musik, a stunning performance by Frances Barber as Billie Trix, and My Darling Clemmie,exploring the relationship between Winston and Clementine Churchill.

There are some exciting double-acts in the programme, including mother and daughter duo After You from Hannah Norris, an exploration of female friendship and industrial meat farming in Haste Theatre’s Ex-Batts and Broilers, and Post-Mortem fromEllandar Productions & Jessica Rose McVay Productions.

 In powerful one-woman shows, Brian Foster Productions presents Myra’s Story about a middle-aged, homeless Dublin street drinker, Liv Productions present Tales from the Garden, Ashleigh Laurence presents her part stand-up show Tumours, andGrist to the Mill Productions explore the warrior and legend in The Ballad of Mulan.

Other female-led productions include: Judith Thompson’s Watching Glory Die, a riveting portrayal of three women trapped in a broken prison system and Theatre of NOTE bring FEMPIRE: Cleo, Theo & Wu by Kirsten Vangsness and FEMPIRE: Mess by Kirsten Vangsness. Women in war feature in I’ll Tell You This For Nothing from Kate JasonSmith, and Ivory Wings from Coreth Arts. 

 Masculinity is explored in All The Pigs present In the Shadow of the Black Dog, a raw and moving exploration of identity and masculinity, and Ed Eales-White presents Who is Daniel King, a story of a man who decides to be a dancer.

 Responding to contemporary social and political issues, Fionn Foley is Brendan Galileo for Europe, Osman Baig looks at Fake News, Scottee & Friends LTD present Class, a show about pretending to be posher than you are, Quick Duck Theatre presentYours Sincerely, a queer coming of age comedy about the complications of 21st century communication, and Eve and Sea Productions’ blend of spoken word, music and surrealism in Salmon asks why is it so hard to admit you’re not okay?

Dutch Kills Theater Company present explore the psychosocial experience of solitary confinement in Solitary, A Cry Havoc Theatre Company Production with LAByrinth Theater Company NY present Devil of Choice, a dark, sexy and funny take about the temptations we face when we find ourselves in a room with the devil; and Tim Honnef (Jonas Müller) presents The Things I Never Told You, a show about half-truths and white lies.

For something out of this world, Sleeping Giant, in association with Celebration Theatre, spins a series of intimate, darkly comic vignettes in this modern thriller, while A Brilliant Everything present The De Nova Super.

If you’re looking for something different, Frankie Foxstone’s AKA The Profit: Walking Tour will take you on a whirlwind tour of her property plans for Edinburgh. Innovative technology is on display in The Gray Cat and The Flounder from PNME and Civil Disobedience, Russell T Davies will be speaking at Assembly Hall as part of the Edinburgh TV Festival, and Meeting Jimcelebrates the captivating man behind the founding of the Traverse Theatre.


Ridiculusmus’ new show Die! Die! Die! Old People Die!

Ridiculusmus brings its latest show to the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! 

a funny and fragile farce about ageing, dying and mourning

TechCube0, Summerhall
Tuesday 13 to Sunday 25 August at 5.40pm
Press performance: Wednesday 14 August at 5.40pm

The UK’s most enduring theatre double act Ridiculusmus bring their latest show Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe from Tuesday 13 to Saturday 25 August. Die! Die! Die! is the final part of a trilogy of works transforming mental health issues into witty and accessible theatre which will be performed in full on 25 August.

In an age where death and grieving are being medicalised out of existence, Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! strives to reclaim humankind’s last taboo from eradication in a paper-fine portrait of a love triangle cursed to eternal life, but without eternal youth.

Libidinous centenarians Violet, Norman and Arthur are doomed to enact a slo-mo ballet of sadness. Amid fumbling, daily rounds of coffee, call centres and cat food, their rants, dribbles, pills and cough bombs litter an ambling blend of symbolist mysticism and synesthesia that has the fear of an ageing world population in its sights. It oozes with the relentless positivity of elderhood and good deaths.

For Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! Haynes and Woods shadowed palliative care workers, liaised with the Festival of Death and Dying in Melbourne, attended death cafés where people talk about death over tea and cake, and trawled their own grief memories for material. Woods began a course as a bereavement counselor – but had to pull out when his own father died.
Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! is the final part of Ridiculusmus’ trilogy of works transforming complex mental health issues into witty and accessible theatre. The full trilogy, Dialogue as the Embodiment of Love, will be presented on Sunday 25 August. Big pharma, psychiatry, psychology and the system all collide in the first two plays – domestic encounters that plunge audiences into disorders of the everyday. The Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland is informed by a treatment method for psychosis which delivered incredible results whilst Give Me Your Love explores the therapeutic impact of MDMA on post-traumatic stress disorder.
Twitter @_Ridiculusmus_

Company: Ridiculusmus
Show: Die! Die! Die! Old People Die!
Venue: TechCube 0, Summerhall, 1 Summerhall, Edinburgh EH9 1PL
Dates: Tuesday 13 & Wednesday 14 August (previews); Thursday 15 to Sunday 25 August (no performance on Monday 19 August)
Tickets: 13 & 14 August £8; 15 to 18 August, 20 to 25 August £10 (£8 concessions)
Time: 5.40pm
Box office: 0131 560 1581 /
Running time: approx. 60 minutes
Suggested age range: 13+
Show: Dialogue as the Embodiment of Love – the trilogy
Date: Sunday 25 August
Times: 4.05pm: Give Me Your Love; 5.40pm: Die! Die! Die! Old People Die!; 8.55pm: Eradication of Schizophrenia in Western Lapland


‘Cruise To Hell’: Fringe debut at 79yo exploring tragic true story of daughter battling side effects of everyday prescription drugs

Cruise To Hell

Cruise to Hell is the debut play by Millie Kieve, which tells the tragic true story of a family holiday turned nightmare when Millie’s 20 year-old daughter Karen goes missing on a cruise.

 The aftermath of the cruise sees the family embark on a tumultuous journey, as a deeply caring and joyous young woman, living a full and happy life, has her rationality snatched away by the side effects of everyday prescription drugs – which plunge her into a frightening fantasy world with tragic consequences.

 Also performed by Millie, storytelling theatre show Cruise to Hell was born out of the conviction that theatre is a powerful way to create awareness which in turn may prevent others from suffering.

 This desire to raise awareness is also what motivated Millie to set up the charity APRIL (Adverse Psychiatric Reactions Information Link) in 1998 as a result of her daughter’s experience. Her research has been used in everything from TV documentaries to medical journals to the front page of the Guardian and has instigated important changes in medical education. 

 Millie Kieve’s debut at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe comes at the age of 79. Her last appearance in Edinburgh was in the 1994 production ofFiddler on the Roof, with Chaim Topol.

 “A remarkable evening, everyone was stunned by the power of your story. It grew in intensity as it unfolded”  Audience member review

Venue: theSpace on the Mile, venue 39 – Radisson Hotel Blu, High Street EH1 1TH

Dates: 12th to 17th August, 2019

Time: 17.45pm (50 minutes)
Tickets: £8 (£6)

Venue box office: 0131 510 2382   Fringe box office: 0131 226 0000

Web sites: 


Oxford Playhouse Edinburgh Fringe Season announced


SOLD presented by Kuumba Nia Arts & Unlock the Chains Collective with Oxford Playhouse

Pleasance Courtyard (Attic) 31 July – 25 August (not 12 or 19) 12.45pm

SOLD tells the true story of Mary Prince and her journey to overcome the brutality of enslavement through the power of her indomitable spirit. Through theatre, song, music, drumming and dance, this masterpiece of Black British theatre is inspired by the storytelling traditions of the West African griot. Kuumba Nia Arts are an Oxford theatre company working with stories from the Black experience, and are currently Artists in Residence with Oxford Playhouse’s EVOLVE scheme.

Give Me One Moment in Time by Doug Crossley presented by Oxford Playhouse in association with the Pleasance. Directed by Paul Hunter.

Pleasance Dome (Jack Dome) 31 July – 26 August (not 12) 2.50pm

Give Me One Moment in Time is a one-man play with songs and comedy about time, trauma and the heartache of trying to understand a friend’s suicide. Doug Crossley was one of six playwrights selected to become a member of Playhouse Playmaker, the Oxford Playhouse’s year-long Writers Attachment Programme for new and emerging playwrights. His debut solo show is coming to the Festival as part of the Pleasance’s new Regional Theatre Partnership Programme. The show is directed by Paul Hunter, Artistic Director of acclaimed company Told By An Idiot and most recently seen in Emma Rice’s adaptation of Angela Carter’s Wise Children.

Standard: Elite by Hidden Track Theatre

Bedlam Theatre (Venue 49) 31 July – 25 August (not 12) 4.55pm

Hidden Track pioneers adventures in theatre form that tell accessible political stories to unite and empower unheard audiences. Their latest production, Standard: Elite is a playful, interactive theatre experience about class and social mobility that’s irreverent, accessible and fun. Standard: Elite, has toured the UK to critical acclaim and won ‘Best New Writing’ at Greater Manchester Fringe and ‘Best Newcomer’ at Brighton Fringe.

, ,

Here’s Your Definitive Guide to Edinburgh Fringe 2019 (you’re welcome)

Edinburgh Fringe 2019 guide by Mr Carl Woodward
Bryony Kimmings

Bryony Kimmings

I loved Bryony Kimming’s I’m A Phoenix, Bitch at Battersea Arts Centre – don’t miss it at The Pleasance. You really are in safe hands with ThisEgg; a gorgeous four-women show called dressed returnsRhum and Clay’s clever The War of the Worlds will be sure to make its mark, too. 

Elsewhere, YESYESNONO return with The Accident Did Not Take Place, featuring a new guest performer every night. Could be good. Dark Lady Co are staging Drowning at Pleasance Courtyard as well – it sets out to confront all we deem evil, horrible, and hideous. Curious eh.

Over at Summerhall, double act Ridiculusmus bring a smart show: Die! Die! Die! Old People Die! This is funny and fragile farce about mortality and mourning. The highly brilliant Cardboard Citizens return with Bystanders, shining a light on the life and death of homeless people. National Theatre Wales will chart the story of a woman travelling from Ireland to Wales to have an abortion in Cotton FingersKieran Hurley and Gary McNair’s Square Go return as well and that will be worth seeing. 

Paines Plough are kind of amazing aren’t they. They always put on outstanding new plays from around the UK; this year it is no different: there are three world premieres in The Roundabout @ Summerhall in co-production with Theatr Clwyd by Daf JamesNathan Bryon and Charles Miles

Among other highlights, Steph Martin stars in I’m Non Typical,Typical by Cambridge’s Bedazzle Inclusive Theatre; this new play aims to change people’s perceptions of disability. Worth a look. 

(BalletBoyz) Dancers in cube

(BalletBoyz) Dancers in cube

Edinburgh Fringe demigod Henry Naylor brings The Nights – the fifth stand-alone play in Naylor’s Arabian Nightmares series, that tackles the uncomfortable relationship between the East and West, post 9/11/ (his wife is Sarah Kendall, you know). I’m rather excited about all-male company BalletyBoyz making their dreamy fringe debut, with THEM/US one piece choreographed by the company and the other by Christopher Wheeldon at Bristo Square, Underbelly. Unmissable talent.  

Traverse Theatre features a host of world premieres including Crocodile Fever by Meghan Tyler – a blackly comic drama set in Northern Ireland. Javaad Alipoor will direct his piece created with the excellent Kirsty HouselyRich Kids: A History of Shopping Malls in Tehran – inspired by stories of the expanding global wealth division. 

I’m also curious to see what the Edinburgh International Festival has on offer. Stephen Fry will present a trilogy of plays adapted from his book Mythos, about the Greek pantheon of gods and their various inceptions. Disability-led Birds of Paradise present Robert Softley Gale’s Purposeless Movements, exploring the perception of masculinity and disability. 

Sometimes you can find a hidden gem at theSpaceUK. I must emphasise the choice word ‘sometimes’ here. (I once sat in a basement with a pipe leaking on my head for 50 minutes, while a woman shaved her legs to the songs of Thin Lizzy – it was not good. It was, in fact, shit). 

Noir Hamlet

Noir Hamlet

Anyway, if you like comedy I reckon Noir Hamlet, which has already picked up the Boston Globe Critic’s Pick earlier this year – is worth a look; it updates Hamlet to a wise-cracking 1940s detective up to his neck in a comedic case with more twists that a gallows tie. 

While you are there, Level Up might be worth a look. It explores a near-future utopia where real love is impossible to measure.

National Theatre of Scotland are staging two world premieres at the festival – Jackie Kay’s Red Dust Road, about growing up as a mixed-race adopted Scot, as well as Tim Crouch’s Total Immediate Collective Imminent Terrestrial Salvation, in a co-production with the Royal Court.

Ian McKellen

Ian McKellen

Stop the clocks: Ian McKellen stops off as part of his 80 date UK tour: this is sold out, which is a shame. I should mention that Robert Icke brings his political reimagining of Oedipus to the international festival, I don’t think I have the energy for this, though.
So, there you have it, that’s the end of my definitive Edinburgh Fringe 2019 guide.

I hope you have found some use in this guide to what the fringe world has on offer. 

If you have tips, tweet me: @mrcarlwoodward*thumbs up emoji*.

WEST END PRODUCER (and Guests)– FREE WILLY! Outrageous new show to make Edinburgh Fringe debut

‘Prepare to be shocked, mocked and rocked…laugh out loud funny’

Michael Ball

‘Funny, informative, and more funny…the jazz hand master of showbiz’

Susan Penhaligon

5* – ‘The masked, mysterious, and above all, enigmatic presence of the Capital’s West End Producer…Bring on the movie, dear’

Jonathan Baz

 ‘So you want to be in Showbiz? Let WEP put you through your paces…go and see this, you won’t find anything else like it on the Fringe’

Paul O’Grady

Theatreland’s anonymous cult figure West End Producer will take on Edinburgh this summer with his first hilarious show – as he auditions special guests for his Free Willy musical.

Come and join WEP, as he is known in theatrical circles, as he flips theatre on its head with theatrical secrets, stories, musings and songs – he will teach you the perfect jazz hand technique, how to bow properly, and will even give one lucky person some genuine worn West End show pants. You may even get the chance to audition and become WEP’s Willy of the Day.

This is no ordinary show, in West End Producer – Free Willy! the audience are on the panel as auditionees are invited to sing such iconic whale-based hits including – My Willy Needs to be Wet, Why is there a Whale in the Hot Tub? and One Sea Mammal More.

West End Producer – Free Willy! is showing at the Edinburgh Fringe Assembly Rooms 2 July 31 – August 6 and Assembly Checkpoint 12 – 26 August. For tickets and more info go to:

 Speaking about his Edinburgh debut WEP said: “Dears, I am beyond thrilled to be spending the summer in Edinburgh as I search for my perfect Free Willy.

 “You wonderfully gorgeous people will help me find my lead performer, as we decide if my guest has what it takes to be a singing sea mammal.

 “I’ll even introduce you to one of Michael’s Balls and give you some tips on how to succeed in entertainment – but be warned, I expect some of the auditionees to be dreadful. Come and help me find my willy, dear”

 West End Producer is the anonymous masked man of theatreland and author of two hugely successful books. Usually getting sloshed at West End press nights with his Jean Valjean teddy bear – Free Willy! sees WEP ball leaping into Edinburgh with his very first show.

Free Willy! will be filled with special guests, whale costumes, theatrical diatribes, WEP’s piano fingering skills, and possibly one of Michael’s Balls.

Tickets are on sale now and for more information go to:

 Praise for West End Producer – Free Willy!

‘West End Producer is the invisible man of theatreland..’ – Reece Shearsmith

‘West End Producer is shaping up to the Theatres’ version of William Goldman: funny, astute, and incisive…a must for theatre-lovers (and haters)’ – Joanne Harris

‘Prepare to be shocked, mocked and rocked…laugh out loud funny’ – Michael Ball

‘Funny, informative, and more funny…the jazz hand master of showbiz’ – Susan Penhaligon

5* – ‘The masked, mysterious, and above all, enigmatic presence of the Capital’s West End Producer…Bring on the movie, dear’ – Jonathan Baz

 West End Producer (and Guests) – Free Willy! is presented by Cuffe and Taylor with Jason Haigh-Ellery.

Paines Plough announces full programme for Roundabout at Summerhall 2019

Paines Plough

Artistic Directors of Paines Plough James Grieve and George Perrin today revealed the full programme for ROUNDABOUT @ SUMMERHALL, kicking off at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe before a UK tour in Autumn 2019.

Paines Plough in co-production with Theatr Clwyd will stage three World Premieres from Daf James, Nathan Byron and Charley Miles. All three productions will be performed in rep by Charlotte Bate, Charlotte O’Leary and Toyin Omari-Kinchdirected by former Paines Plough Associate Director, and nabokov Artistic Director, Stef O’Driscoll.

Visiting company productions in ROUDABOUT will be: ISLANDER, from Helen Milne Productions, a new musical with a contemporary Scottish folk-inspired score about a mysterious stranger and island on the brink; Tim Cowbury’s absurd and quietly shattering response to stories of those seeking refuge in the UK, THE CLAIM; Dirty Protest’s HOW TO BE BRAVESiân Owen’s one-woman love story to Newport, the city that made her about keeping the magic we arrive into the world with, finding out what we’re made of and learning to be brave when your world’s falling apart; PARAKEET from Brigitte Aphrodite and Quiet Boy produced by Boundless Theatre and Boom Shakalaka Productions, a new musical about a young woman finding her voice with the help of a gang of exotic birds; Edinburgh Comedy Award Winner Richard Gadd’s chilling story about obsession, delusion, and the terrifying ramifications of a fleeting mistake in BABY REINDEER from Francesca Moody Productions in association with the Bush Theatre; Middle Child return with THE CANARY AND THE CROW, brand new gig theatre about the journey of a working class black kid who is accepted to a prestigious grammar school.

Francesca Moody Productions’ Fringe First winner SQUARE GO penned by Kieran Hurley and Gary McNair will also return to Roundabout, following acclaim in 2018.

James Grieve and George Perrin said: “We’re immensely proud to present our ROUNDABOUT @ SUMMERHALL line-up for 2019, jam-packed with outstanding new plays from around the UK.

Our Roundabout repertory features a company of shapeshifting actors in three extraordinary world premieres from three of the UK’s most exciting writers and we’re welcoming thrilling, trailblazing new writing companies, playwrights and artists to Roundabout. From the return of our Associate Company Middle Child with an all new gig theatre show to the chilling debut play from Richard Gadd, this is a programme that showcases the very best new talent in British theatre. We can’t wait to welcome audiences to Roundabout @ Summerhall for a sixth consecutive summer at the Fringe.”

Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd present

ON THE OTHER HAND, WE’RE HAPPY by Daf James – World Premiere.
DEXTER AND WINTER’S DETECTIVE AGENCY by Nathan Bryon – World Premiere.
DAUGHTERHOOD by Charley Miles – World Premiere.

Roundabout 2019 Visiting Companies

ISLANDER by Amy Draper, Stewart Melton & Finn Anderson. Helen Milne Productions.
THE CLAIM by Tim Cowbury. Tim Cowbury, Mark Maughan in association with James Quaife Productions.
HOW TO BE BRAVE by Siân Owen. A Dirty Protest production.
PARAKEET by Brigitte Aphrodite with music by Quiet Boy. A Boundless Theatre & Boom Shakalaka production.
BABY REINDEER by Richard Gadd. A Francesca Moody production.
THE CANARY AND THE CROW by Daniel Ward. A Middle Child production.
SQUARE GO by Kieran Hurley and Gary McNair. 
A Francesca Moody production.

A Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd production
By Daf James
Directed by 
Stef O’Driscoll

A single Dad meets his adopted daughter for the first time. Then he agrees to meet her birth mother. When their two worlds collide, will what they have in common outweigh their differences?

A one-off meeting. But three lives will be changed forever.

ON THE OTHER HAND, WE’RE HAPPY is a tender, funny, hopeful play about being a mum when your name is Dad.

Daf James is an award-winning writer, composer and performer working across theatre, radio television and film in English and Welsh. Having trained in the Lecoq pedagogy at the London International School of Performing Arts he went on to earn a doctorate in Theatre Studies from the University of Warwick.  His first full-length play LLWYTH[Tribe] became a Welsh-language cultural phenomenon, ‘a water-shed play that changed the landscape of Welsh language theatre forever.’

Time: 11.20 – 12.30 / 14.15 – 15.25
Age guidance: 14+
Running time: 70 mins
Dates: 01, 05, 08, 10, 12, 15, 19, 22 – 11.20am – 12.30pm
31, 02, 04, 07, 09, 10, 14, 16, 18, 21, 23 – 14.15pm – 15.25pm
Ticket prices: £9 – £17
Press performance: 14.15, 4 August, 11.20, 5 August

A Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd production
By Nathan Bryon
Directed by 
Stef O’Driscoll

When Dexter’s mum is sent to jail for getting mixed up in a jewellery robbery, it’s up to Dexter and Winter to get her out. On their journey to uncover the truth and free mum, their detective work leads them to some surprising discoveries.

A mad-cap adventure story for all the family from one of the writers behind CBeebies hits RASTAMOUSE, APPLE TREE HOUSE and SWASHBUCKLE.

Nathan is a writer and actor, who grew up eating as much Uxbridge Road Caribbean food as his bank balance would allow. He is best known to viewers for his role as regular character Jamie in SOME GIRLS and BENIDORM’s sunniest holiday maker, Joey Ellis. Nathan has written for critically acclaimed CBeebies’ animation RASTAMOUSE, BAFTA award winning SWASHBUCKLE and on all three series of BAFTA nominated APPLE TREE HOUSE (CBeebies) alongside BAFTA winning GIGGLEBIZ. Last Year Nathan’s one-man show MIXED BRAIN about his mixed heritage premiered in ROUNDABOUT at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Nathan has secured a 3 picture book deal with Penguin Random House. His first book LOOK UP! will hit shelves in the US and UK in June 2019.

Time: 11.20 – 12.10
Age guidance: 5+
Running time: 50 mins
Prices: £8- £28
Dates:  03, 04, 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25 – 11.20am – 12.10pm
Press performance: 4 August

A Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd production
By Charley Miles
Directed by 
Stef O’Driscoll

One sister stayed at home to care for Dad, the other set out to ‘make a difference’,

Reunited under their childhood roof, Pauline and Rachel unearth more than the 10 years between them.

It’s a huge gap. Almost insurmountable.

And each is determined to let the other know exactly who has done things right.

DAUGHTERHOOD is a beautiful, ferocious play about the bonds that tie us, and how we sometimes need to break them.

Charley is a playwright from rural North Yorkshire. She has written plays for the Royal Court, Leeds Playhouse, and Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. She has been attached to Paines Plough as their Playwright Fellow in 2018 and Leeds Playhouse as their Channel 4 Playwright in Residence in 2017. Her debut play, BLACKTHORN, was a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn prize in New York in 2017. Her new play, THERE ARE NO BEGINNINGS, will premiere at Leeds Playhouse in Autumn 2019. She has original television dramas in development with Buccaneer Media, Mam Tor Productions and Entertainment One.

Time: 11.20 – 12.30 / 14.15 – 15.25
Age guidance: 14+
Running time: 70 mins
Dates: 31, 02, 07, 09, 14, 16, 21, 23 – 11.20am – 12.30pm
01, 03, 05, 08, 12, 15, 17, 19, 22, 25 – 14.15pm – 15.25pm
Ticket prices: £9 – £17
Press performance: 14.15, 5 August

Helen Milne Productions present
Concept and direction by Amy Draper
Book by Stewart Melton
Music and lyrics by Finn Anderson

Eilidh stares out to sea and dreams of a new life beyond her lonely island. Myth and reality collide when the tide washes a mysterious stranger onto her beach, changing her life forever.

Epic storytelling, intimately staged with a contemporary Scottish folk-inspired score. The cast live-record and layer their voices to create an ethereal adventure for the ears and imagination.

Originally developed in association with Comar. ISLANDER: A NEW MUSICAL is part of the Made in Scotland 2019 showcase.

Time: 10.00 – 11.00
Age guidance: 8+
Running time: 60 mins
Dates: 31, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14,15,16,17,18,19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 (not Tuesdays)
Ticket prices: £8 – £15
BSL signed performance on 12 Aug
Captioned performance: 21 Aug
Press performance: 10:00, 4/5 August

Tim Cowbury, Mark Maughan in association with James Quaife Productions present
By Tim Cowbury
Directed by Mark Maughan

A comically absurd and quietly shattering journey to the heart of our tolerant and fair A comically absurd and quietly shattering journey to the heart of our tolerant and fair society.

Serge stands before us. He has a performance to give. But why is he here? What is he claiming has happened to him? And what has Willy Wonka got to do with it?

A bold, imaginative response to the stories of those seeking refuge in the UK, The Claim asks what happens when your life is at stake and all you have to save it are your words.

Part of the British Council Showcase 2019

Time:12: 50
Age guidance: 12+
Running time: 65 mins
Dates: July 31, August 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, 07, 08, 09, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25
Ticket prices: £9 – £15
Press performance: 12:50, 4/5 August

A Dirty Protest production in association with Chapter
By Siân Owen
Directed by Catherine Paskell

Produced by the award-winning Welsh company behind Fringe hit Sugar Baby, this one-woman play is about what we’re made of and learning to be brave when your world’s falling apart.

When Katie was little, she was brave: climbing trees and riding bikes too fast. Now Katie’s a mum, she must be brave in a new way.

Determined her daughter will keep the fierce magic she arrived into the world with, Katie sets off on a mission around Newport with the help of a stolen BMX, a policewoman with bad hair, and a pigeon in a bag.

Time: 15:45
Age guidance: 14+
Running time: 60 mins
Dates: 31 July, Aug 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25
Captioned performances: 7, 14, 21 August
Ticket prices: £9 – £15
Press performance: 15:45 4/5 August

A Boundless Theatre & Boom Shakalaka Productions production
Words by Brigitte Aphrodite and music by Quiet Boy
Directed by Laura Keefe

In Margate, an isolated teenager forms a band and find her voice with the help of a gang of exotic birds. A new musical about finding your flock and ruffling feathers, Parakeet is a feast for the ears, eyes and heart told through irresistible song, poetry and electronic sounds where empathy is the new punk.

Time: 17:05
Running time: 60 minutes
Dates: Wednesday 31 July – Sunday 25 August 2019
Captioned performance: 7, 14, 21 August~
Age guidance:  14+
Ticket prices: £9 – £15
Press performance:  17:05, 4/5 August

Francesca Moody Productions in association with the Bush Theatre
Written and performed by Richard Gadd
Directed by Jon Brittain

‘I looked at her, wanting her to laugh. Wanting her to share in the joke. But she didn’t. She just stared. I knew then, in that moment – that she had taken it literally…’

Edinburgh Comedy Award winner Richard Gadd has a chilling story to tell about obsession, delusion and the terrifying ramifications of a fleeting mistake. An unmissable debut play directed by Olivier Award winner Jon Brittain and produced by 2018’s double Fringe-First winning Francesca Moody Productions in association with The Bush Theatre.

Running time: 65 Minutes
Dates: 31 July, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25
Ticket prices: £9 – £14
Age Guidance: 14+
Press performance: 18.25, 4 and 5 August

A Middle Child production

By Daniel Ward
Music by Prez 96 and James Frewer
Direction by Paul Smith

The award-winning Middle Child present brand new gig theatre about the journey of a working-class black kid who is accepted to a prestigious grammar school.

This lyrical, semi-autobiographical piece from writer and performer Daniel Ward uses grime, hip hop and theatre to tell the story of the struggle between a new environment that doesn’t accept you and an old one that has no opportunity.

Time: 19:50
Running time: 65 mins
Dates: Jul 31, Aug 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25
Ticket prices: £9-£15
Age Guidance: 14+
Press performance: 19:50, 4 / 5 August

Francesca Moody Productions in association with SEARED
By Kieran Hurley and Gary McNair

The unmissable, Fringe First Award-winning show from Kieran Hurley and Gary McNair. Max spends his days daydreaming and hanging out with his weird wee pal Stevie. But when Max is called for his first Square Go – a fight by the school gates – it’s his own demons he must wrestle with first. A raucous play about playground violence, myths of masculinity and the challenge to step up or run. Starring Game of Thrones’ Daniel Portman and River City’s Gavin Jon Wright and featuring an original soundtrack by members of Frightened Rabbit.

Time: 21:15
Running time: 60 Minutes
Dates: 31 July, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25
Ticket prices: £9 – £17
Age Guidance: 12+


For further information about Paines Plough please contact
Maisie Lawrence at The Corner Shop PR: / 0207 831 7657



Paines Plough and Theatr Clwyd present

Roundabout @ Summerhall
Box Office: 0131 560 1580

Press Performance for ON THE OTHER HAND, WE’RE HAPPY at 14.15 on 4 August and 11.2oon 5 August
Press Performance for DEXTER AND WINTER’S DETECTIVE AGENCY at 11.2oon 4 August
ress Performance for DAUGHTERHOOD at 14.15 on 5 August

Closed captioning available for all Paines Plough productions.


29 June – 20 July Mold with Theatr Clwyd
05-08 September Salford with The Lowry
12-15 September Ramsgate with Creative Civic Change
19-22 September Doncaster with CAST
26-29 September Bournemouth with The Lighthouse, Poole
03-06 October Lincoln with Lincoln Performing Arts Centre

What Girls Are Made Of Returns To Edinburgh Festival Fringe To Rock An Even Bigger Venue

Simon Donaldson, Cora Bissett, Susan Bear and Harry Ward in What Girls Are Made Of. Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic
Simon Donaldson, Cora Bissett, Susan Bear and Harry Ward in What Girls Are Made Of. Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic

Simon Donaldson, Cora Bissett, Susan Bear and Harry Ward in What Girls Are Made Of. Photo by Mihaela Bodlovic

Raw Material and Traverse Theatre Company co-production busts out of the Traverse 1 theatre walls into the bigger Festival space of Assembly Hall

  • London transfer to Soho Theatre (9-28 September) also announced
  • Winner of a Scotsman Fringe First award and a Herald Angel award
  • Tickets on sale now

 Following a sold-out world premiere run at Traverse Festival 2018 – and a follow-on tour taking it around Scotland, to Northern Ireland, and internationally to the USA and Brazil – the Traverse Theatre Company and Raw Material reunite to reveal that during August 2019, What Girls Are Made Of will return to bust out of the Traverse 1 theatre walls. With unprecedented Festival demand leaving people queuing for hours for returns, it will take to the larger space of Assembly Hall – almost four times as big – from 1-25 August. This run also marks Raw Material’s return to Assembly Hall, where their 2016 presentation of Glasgow Girls (in association with Regular Music), directed by Cora Bissett, proved to be the best selling show of that year’s Fringe, selling 12,600 tickets across the month.

Immediately after, What Girls Are Made Of will transfer to London’s Soho Theatre (9-28 September), hot on the heels of the recent acclaimed run of Mouthpiece by Kieran Hurley (Traverse Theatre Company in association with HighTide).

A Raw Material and Traverse Theatre Company co-production, in association with Regular Music, What Girls Are Made Of is written and performed by Cora Bissett and charts her rollercoaster journey from indie-kid hopeful to wised-up woman. This epic piece of gig theatre – with live backing band actor/musicians Susan Bear and Simon Donaldson reprising their roles, plus the new addition of Harry Ward – celebrates the euphoric highs (touring with Radiohead, partying with Blur) and epic shitstorms (untrustworthy managers, £40,000 debt) of her young life, poignantly interspersed with the personal losses and gains of her adult lifeDirected by former Traverse Artistic Director Orla O’Loughlin.

During its Traverse Festival 2018 run, the production received a swathe of five-star reviews, with The Herald hailing it ‘a life changing litany of pure joy’, while The Guardian called Bissett’s performance ‘magnificent, The Scotsman praised the production as beautiful, passionate and exhilarating’ and The Telegraph pegged it an ‘undisputable hit. In addition, it received a Scotsman Fringe First award and a Herald Angel award.

In the run up to the Festival 2019 dates at Assembly Hall, What Girls Are Made Of will continue its touring, with dates atEdinburgh (Traverse Theatre, until 20 April); Belfast (The MAC, 1-5 May); Kirkcaldy (Adam Smith Theatre, 7 and 8 May);Dundee (Dundee Rep, 14 and 15 May); Stirling (Macrobert, 17 and 18 May); Brazil (Cultura Inglesa Festival, 24-26 May); andCharleston, USA (Spoleto Festival, 4-8 June).


Assembly Hall, Edinburgh, EH1 2LU

Tickets on sale now: 0131 623 3030 and online via here

Soho Theatre, London, W1D 3NE

Tickets on sale now: 020 7478 0100 and online via here