A dystopian musical adventure.
The future. Scruggs wakes up one day in a world he doesn’t recognise. It’s the same world, but different. Maybe he just begins to notice things more. For a start there are boys downstairs with strange exotic music. There’s his non-existent relationship with his father and an uncanny accumulation of cars parked on the pavements and there’s the phantom menace terrorising the wealthy commuters who drive to town from out of town. The neighbourhood is changing but not for the better. Today Scruggs decides he will no longer be the victim and begins a journey to reconcile himself with his father, righting the wrongs along the way.
Travelling through a futuristic landscape, Subway is a dark and comical dystopian musical adventure about small acts of rebellion and where they might lead. Part storytelling, part gig, part theatre, the main character, Scruggs tells his story in monologue form. In the present tense, his day begins to unfold, physically evoking the world around him from his bedroom to the streets of the city. Meanwhile the on-stage musicians and performers weave music and text to create characters as well as sound, tune and atmosphere.
A major international collaboration between Vanishing Point and an extraordinary Kosovan Band, Subway is a dystopian musical adventure; it is is a journey through a landscape a few years from now, a show about small acts of rebellion and where they might lead.
Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh (Fringe Festival)
The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen
Tron Theatre, Glasgow
Lyric Hammersmith, London
'a tremendous, thrilling fusion of differences – theatre and music, northern and eastern European attitudes…wonderfully wrenching, reeling folk music…moved me much more than I ever could have expected'
Time Out London
'In director Matthew Lenton’s hands the drama is electric enough, but by setting its bleakly funny wanderings to a magnificent live soundtrack by a seven-piece Kosovan band whose keening mix of heart-breaking string-led laments and frenetic chase… are woven into the action, the results are jaw-dropping… A world-class piece of artistry and craft. Every tin-pot councillor and empire-building numpty squatting in Holyrood should be dragged along to see this show. As should everyone else.'
'…Vanishing Point’s Subway is something really special…The script may move along with the pace and explosiveness of an action magazine but it is packed with subtle touches…a really exciting theatrical production…uplifting and warming.'
British Theatre Guide
'A really refreshing and vibrant piece of theatre that will appeal to the video game generation… At the end of a rousing ninety minutes, this reviewer’s first reaction was to see if it was possible to repeat the experience.'
British Theatre Guide
'A highly enjoyable show powered by a band of musicians from Kosovo… features superb performances by Sandy Grierson and Rosalind Sydney, in a highly unusual theatrical concoction.'
Scotland on Sunday
'Blissfully funny and well-observed. Matthew Lenton brings his usual barrage of theatrical brilliance to the telling of the tale… a brilliant central performance from Sandy Grierson… Subway has barrowloads of style, haunting futuristic imagery and a fine anarchic spirit; if it fails to continue Vanishing Point’s huge success in making theatre to attract younger audiences, then my name’s Irvine Welsh.'
'Here and there, now and then, absolute joy can be found on the fringe. It is rare, to be savoured and treasured, carefully wrapped up in the mind… Subway is one such gem… almost impossible to describe but also impossible to forget.'
'a fast-paced, imaginatively conceived slice of modern urban angst… a seven-piece Kosovan band who deliver a quite breathtaking musical commentary on the action… not to be missed.'
'superbly engaging… not only terrifically involving, but persuasive.'
'a seamless blend of music and performance'
Scotland on Sunday
'…feverishly energetic… the music counterpoints the action, becoming a character in itself: like the rest of this show, brash, breezy and often very funny'
'a brilliant seven-piece band, whose musical commentary turns a cup of tea into a lyric symphony… a distinct aural and visual style'
'This smart and stylish production from Vanishing Point…uses its seven piece band to splendid effect in producing a driving and intriguing narrative… Grierson’s bewildered narrator is outstanding. His movement, as technically precise as it is smartly observed, is a wonder of itself'
'One of the gems… running through it all is a deep and passionate sense of place, of Edinburgh present and future'
Scottish and International Financial Times
'Twenty five years after Blade Runner, theatre has finally produced its dystopian equivalent… What impresses most is the all-engulfing theatricality of the occasion… helped by the shifting presence of a seven-piece Kosovan band which provides not only a continuous, richly textured live accompaniment but also the detailed impression of a populated city'
'What do you get when you cross a renowned Glasgweigan theatre company with a distincyive Kosovan band? No, I couldn’t guess either, but what I witnessed was truly special… With suspense, drama, a hint of dark humour and music, Subway is an amalgamation of great ingredients that make up an unmissable show'
'…a fast-paced, clever slice of urban angst… Not to be missed'
This Is London
'…Intriguing…not, in short, your average 75 minutes of theatre and all the better for it…sophisticated…accomplished'
'This is a wonderfully ambitious and assured hour of expressionistic theatre from a company of immense vision and talent.'
Winner of Scotsman Fringe First 2007
Winner of the Herald Angels Award 2007
A Vanishing Point and Tron Theatre co-producition, commissioned by the Lyric Hammersmith and supported by NTS Workshop.
Directed by Matthew Lenton
Set, Lighting & Costume Designer Kai Fischer
Musical Director Alasdair Macrae
Text by The company
Dramaturg Nicola McCartney
Sandy Grierson and Rosalind Sydney
Mohamed Al-Khazali, Ferdi Fanaj, Festim Fanaj, Adorel Haxhia, Flamur Lokaj, Artan Rexhepi
and Astrit Stafai.
Production Manager Fraser Thompson-Noble
Sound Engineer Matthew Padden
Marketing & PR Manager Elaine McChesney
Creative Associate Sandy Grierson
Photography by Tim Morozzo
Publicity Material by Greenlight Creative