Lockerbie: Lost Voices (Edinburgh Fringe)
The Scottish Storytelling Centre provides an apt location for this challenging political piece about Scotland's most deadly terror attack
What could be a more relevant venue than the Scottish Storytelling Centre to explore the story of Scotland's most deadly terror attack?
Lockerbie: Lost Voices follows the lives of three couples on the ill fated Pan Am flight from London to New York in an emotionally charged piece; being aware of the true nature of the event makes it all the more challenging to watch.
James Bryce (Alan) and Doreen McGillivray (Louise) deliver some surprising humour as a married couple deciding on life back home in the US or on a new venture moving to Europe. The comic relief is a welcome element and could be made a larger part of the plot; their marital tiffs are a highlight.
John (Tim Licata) is the only character based on an actual Lockerbie victim, Major Chuck McKee, a US military intelligence agent who many writers believe was returning to the US to uncover CIA groups trafficking drugs through Europe; but this is not divulged in too much depth here, marking a missed opportunity.
The political opinions touched on in the play are few and far between. After the attack the characters are telling the story from another realm; they've passed over. Controversial opinions that have arisen since the incident are only briefly discussed. One character mentions the political differences between Scotland and the US authorities but barely scratches the surface.
The innovative idea of having the victims speak as their characters have died is not made full use of. It would be much more moving to see the thoughts and actions of the victims after the attack, as many of the moments beforehand have already been previously documented.
Whilst Lockerbie: Lost Voices provides a candid insight into some of the lives of the victims and the moments before their deaths, the title of the play is somewhat disconnected from the content as most of the action is set before the attack. Nevertheless Lee Gershuny's writing proves captivating and sensitive throughout.