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Ulster American

Ulster American
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0131 228 1404
If Jacobean revenge tragedies were played as uproarious comedy, they’d look like this... a satire as timely as it is riotous. ★★★★★
The Guardian


    Start date20 Feb 2019
    End date2 Mar 2019
  • TicketsFull price £20 / Standard concession £16 / U30s/Students £14 / Other concession £5

    Traverse Theatre Company

    When someone treats me like a piece of shit… I bring out my Academy Award.
    It has something to say. It’s saying I’m right.

    Winner of the Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Award as well as a Scotsman Fringe First, the most talked-about show of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2018 returns fresh from a smash-hit, sold out festival run.

    Jay is the American Oscar-winning actor taking the lead in a new play that connects with his Irish roots. Leigh is the English director who will do anything to get noticed. And Ruth is the Northern Irish playwright whose voice must be heard.

    The stage is set for great success but when the three meet to discuss the play’s challenges and provocations a line is crossed, and the heated discussion quickly escalates to a violent climax.

    Exploring abuses of power, the confusion of cultural identity and the silencing of the female voice, Ulster American is confrontational and brutally funny – not for the faint of heart, and not to be missed.

    Written by David Ireland, whose play Cyprus Avenue won the James Tait Black Award 2017 and Best Play at the Irish Times Theatre Awards 2017, and directed by the Traverse's Interim Artistic Director Gareth Nicholls (How to Disappear, Letters to Morrissey, Trainspotting).

    @traversetheatre / #UlsterAmerican

    Wed 20 - Sat 23 Feb, 7.30pm
    Tue 26 Feb - Sat 2 Mar, 7.30pm
    Fri 22 Feb & Sat 2 Mar, 2pm

    Full price £20
    Standard concession £16
    U30s / Students £14
    Other concession £5

    See our Box Office page for full pricing and booking information.

    Access Performances
    Audio Described: Wed 27 Feb, 7.30pm (Touch Tour at 6.45pm)
    British Sign Language: Wed 27 Feb, 7.30pm


    Running Time
    1h 20min

    Age Recommendation 

    Note: Strictly no latecomers. Contains very strong language, graphic violence and references to sexual violence. 

    Supported by Creative Scotland and the City of Edinburgh Council. With additional support from The JMK Trust.

    Image by Michael Cranston

    On tour:
    Adelaide Festival, Australia: 13–17 March
    Auckland Arts Festival, New Zealand: 20–24 March
    Abbey Theatre, Dublin: 10–20 April
    Lyric Theatre, Belfast: 24-28 April

    • Gareth Nicholls

    • Becky Minto

    • Kate Bonney

      Lighting Designer
    • MJ McCarthy

      Composer / Sound Designer
    • EmmaClaire Brightlyn

      Fight Director
    • Kolbrún Björt Sigfúsdóttir

      Assistant Director (Supported by The JMK Trust. Leverhulme Arts Scholar and recipient of the JMK regional bursary funded by the Leverhulme Trust Arts Scholarships Fund)
    • Darrell D’Silva, Robert Jack, Lucianne McEvoy

    • If Jacobean revenge tragedies were played as uproarious comedy, they’d look like this... a satire as timely as it is riotous. ★★★★★
      The Guardian
    • Gareth Nicholls directs a production that has the energy of a bullfight. ★★★★★
      The Times
    • Ferocious, raucous, more-is-more humour and furious, unstoppable energy. ★★★★★
      The Arts Desk
    • There are moments in this play that are so shockingly provocative, so laugh-out-loud funny while simultaneously curl-into-a-ball-and cringe-worrying that I found my mouth was actually open. ★★★★★
      What’s On Stage
    • Full of sharp satire and black humour ramped up to black hole levels of dark, it dares to actually shock. ★★★★★
      Edinburgh Festivals Magazine
    • An increasingly bloody welter of gender and identity politics. ★★★★
      The Scotsman
    • For its incisiveness and sheer energy, Ulster American is pretty unmissable. ★★★★
      Financial Times
    • The play’s punchline might not be subtle, but it is necessarily deadly in its execution. ★★★★
      The Herald

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