Theatre News

Finborough director 'profoundly surprised' by lack of plays on Scottish referendum

The venue will stage four plays dedicated to the issue next month

The Finborough Theatre is staging a season of plays next month dedicated to the Scottish Independence Referendum, a season it claims is the "only one of its kind" in England.

Titled Scotland Decides, the four-week season includes three English premieres of Scots works and a new play by leading 'Yes' campaigner Alan Bissett.

Speaking to WhatsOnStage, artistic director Neil McPherson said: "I thought it important that the Finborough Theatre present something special for an event so momentous as the referendum – and we have become well known in recent years for the Scottish work we have produced, even going as far as presenting plays both in Scots and Scots Gaelic.

"I was profoundly surprised though to see how little the English theatre is responding to the vote. As the BBC says, 'There are more Scots in England than any city in Scotland… more than the population of Edinburgh or Glasgow.'"

The Finborough's season is headlined by the English premiere of Robert McLellan's The Flouers O'Edinburgh, which opens on 4 September (previews from 2 September). The 1948 play is a satire on the aftermath of the 1707 Acts of Union, the Scottish Enlightenment and the battle between the Scots and English tongues.

It also features The Wallace (7-23 September), the English premiere of Sydney Goodsir Smith's verse drama on the life of 'Braveheart'; Jock: Scotland on Trial (10-13 September), a new play by leading 'Yes' campaigner Alan Bissett; and a staged reading of John McGrath's Little Red Hen, a sweeping history of 'Red Clydeside', on the evening of the referendum itself – 18 September.

McPherson added: "Even for the English, the result will have lasting ramifications for the future of our island whichever way the vote goes."

For more information on the Finborough Theatre, click here