Blog Archives

Reflections on writing ENSEMBLE

On Thursday, Friday and Saturday next week, my new play, called Ensemble, is on a mini-tour of rehearsed readings at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh, Webster’s Theatre in Glasgow and the Byre in St Andrews. Each place has special resonances

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One Thing at a Time

I have a limitation as a writer which I suspect is already obvious to anyone who knows my work at all: I can only think about one thing at a time. I am partly ashamed of this. No one likes

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Reflecting on reception: the first draft at Òran Mór

It’s been some time since I blogged on this site. There are a couple of reasons for that. One is that I’ve been away doing other things. Most importantly, and of some relevance to this project, I’ve been working on

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Living in Truth

This project, Who’s Watching Who, is something of a test case. What is being tested is the idea of extending the reach and impact of academic research by involving a non-academic with access to a non- academic audience. That is,

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Verbatim Theatre and Actually Existing Socialism – Some thoughts on an approach to Ensemble

‘In nature we never see anything isolated, but everything in connection with something else which is before it, beside it, under it, and over it.’ GOETHE ‘According to Marx and Engels the dialectic system is only the conscious reproduction of

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Food for thought: groceries, the Stasi, and verbatim theatre

I am reviewing transcripts and translations of interviews my colleague Laura Bradley conducted before Christmas in Germany, and other than the envy and frustration of illness having prevented my being there, I am enormously grateful for the insights and testimony

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Non-negotiable facts and the possibilities of theatre

Well, for one reason and another, the Berlin trip didn’t work out for me. Right now I was supposed to be back from Germany with a headful of interviews and Stasi sightseeing, instead of which, I’ve been going to the

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Effective Day-Dreaming

“Effective Dreaming” is how the psychiatrist in Ursula Le Guin’s “Lathe of Heaven” describes the nightmares of his patient. The patient, Orr, believes that his dreams all come true, and subtly and terribly change the world in order to do

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First Blog Post on ENSEMBLE

I’m Scottish and I live in Scotland. What am I doing thinking about writing a play about people who are German and live in part of Germany? And whose experience and historical circumstances are so different from mine? Well, we

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