Two Tribes Clash!

Nov 21 2016 | By More

Clash of the new-writing nights

Edinburgh is poised for not one, not two, but three different nights of new writing, running simultaneously this Thursday, 24 November 2016.

This is not so much being spoilt for choice, but forced to choose between events that will attract very similar audiences. On the one hand Village Pub Theatre is using Trump’s election as provocation for its Resistance night in Leith, on the other it is the first Edinburgh foray for Glasgow’s Tandem Collective on the Royal Mile.


The third event is probably less of a clash, as the Traverse theatre brings on the silver anniversary version of its annual schools playwriting project, Class Act. This will be taking place over two evenings: Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24.

The big dilemma comes between the Village Pubbers and the Tandem Writers.

Down in Leith there are new scripts by Sylvia Dow, Rosanna Hall, Samuel Jameson, Deb Jones and James Ley. These will be performed script-in-hand in the back room of the Village Pub.

The common theme will be Resistance. All inspired by the election of Donald Trump to American president, so up-to-the-minute topical. It’s £3 on the door and resisting to that home baking has proved futile in the past, so no reason why it will not be so this time.

In Tandem

Up on the Royal Mile, Glasgow’s Tandem Writing Collective are taking over the downstairs bar of the The Canons’ Gait pub. Playwrights Jennifer Adam, Amy Hawes and Mhairi Quinn provide the six ten-minute plays, which will be directed by Kolbrún Björt Sigfúsdóttir

The Tandem Writing Collective

The Tandem Writing Collective. Photo: Tandem facebook page

The plays will be performed script-in-hand by Euan Brockie, Angela Milton, Philip Rainford, Debbie Whyte Sarah Mooney Torya Hughes and Debbie Cannon. It’s free entry and there’ll be music by Heather Wolfe and Eilidh Park.

Just to make matters slightly more complicated, VPT regular Sophie Good has her own adaptation of Green Tea being performed by Blazing Hyena at the Gayfield Creative Spaces. Fortunately this is on all week, so is not part of this massive new-writing clash-up!

Good’s adaptation of the horror story by the famed Victoria writer of gothic fiction, J. Sheridan Le Fanu is a three-hander with the action transposed to modern day Edinburgh. It’s a hotly anticipated ticket and there’s a bit about the play in the audition notice here.

continually evolves

The Traverse’s Class Act has been bringing young people’s voices to the stage through its unique creative learning project for 25 years now.

Over the past four months, five groups of young people have been able to collaborate with the Traverse, given 87 young people a “hands-on, real-life experience of what it feels like to be a playwright”. Each group has been paired up with a professional playwright, as well as a Traverse director and team of professional actors to try out new ideas and develop their work.

The best of the results will be performed live on the Traverse Stage, with 14 plays from Leith Academy and Tynecastle High School writers on Wednesday and a dozen plays from Broughton High School, WHEC and The Rock Trust on Thursday.

The Traverse model continually evolves and responds to the participants, according to the theatre’s engagement manager, Sunniva Ramsay.

She said: “We work very closely with schools and teachers, to ensure that the project supports their internal curriculum, whilst also offering young people the opportunity to explore, experiment and develop their own interpretation of the world through creative writing.

“The young people are encouraged to write about any subject, topic, issue they like and the professional theatre makers are there to support the young people’s decisions and offer guidance – there is never a ‘right answer,’ only a young person’s unique point of view.”

Tell that to the post-truth world view of the new president of the United States of America.

But the burning question for all fans of new writing is probably: Should Æ set up a clash diary?


Class Act: Silver
Traverse, 10 Cambridge Street, EH1 2ED. Phone booking: 0131 228 1404
Weds 23/Thurs 24 November 2016
Evenings: 7.30pm.Tickets £6.50 (£4.50) from:

VPT: Resistance
The Village Pub, 16 South Fort Street, EH6 4DN
Thursday 24 November.
Doors 7.30 for 8pm. Entry £3 on the door.
Village Put Theatre on facebook: PubTheatre

Tandem Comes to Edinburgh
The Canons’ Gait, 232 Canongate, EH8 8DQ
Thursday 25.
Doors 7.30pm for an 8pm start. Free.
Tandem Writing Collective on facebook: Tandemwritingcollective

Green Tea
Gayfield Creative Spaces, 11 Gayfield Square, EH1 3NT.
Tuesday 22-Saturday 27 November.
Evenings: 7.30pm.
Tickets from Eventbrite
Blazing Hyena website:


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