First Stages Readings with Q&A: GAME and Blue Departed - Recording

Traverse Theatre Company By Emilie Robson and Serafina Cusack

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This is a recording of a live event, so bookers won't be able to participate in the Q&A section of the event. Bookers will be able to view the recording on demand until Wed 31 March, 2021.

As part of the First Stages Festival, extracts from plays by writers who entered scripts to Open Submissions 2019 receive their first public readings on their journey towards the stage.

by Emilie Robson

Jen and Dean travel back and forth on the Tyne & Wear Metro line; to parties, to prom and often to nowhere in particular. Following them as they navigate the complicated dance of an adolescent friendship, fuelled by jealousy, confusion and vodka, GAME asks what happens when we realise that we no longer want what we wanted, only as it’s happening.

Blue Departed by Serafina Cusack

Him and Her. Dante and Beatrice. Imagine for a moment that Dante is a heroin addict. Beatrice has overdosed; she lies cold and crumpled on the kitchen floor. Flashes of reality burn quickly as He spirals downwards through the circles of Hell guided by the earnest hand of His Brother, all the while haunted by the memory of his deceased lover. Blue Departed is a portrait of a couple consumed by addiction and despair, caught in a decaying, high-speed dystopia.

These script-in-hand readings were directed by Debbie Hannan (GAME) and Gareth Nicholls (Blue Departed) and were followed by a Q&A with the live event audience.

Each Autumn, the Traverse invites writers based in the UK and Ireland to anonymously submit a full length script to us via our Open Submissions window to help us discover the most exciting and visionary new voices out there. Both GAME and Blue Departed have been developed by our literary department after Emilie Robson and Serafina Cusack were selected from over 600 writers who sent us their plays in 2019.

This event is part of our First Stages Festival - a celebration of storytelling and playwriting.

Emilie Robson
Serafina Cusack

The Traverse Theatre is funded by Creative Scotland and The City of Edinburgh Council, with additional support from The Scottish Government Performing Arts Venues Relief Fund.



  • Director - GAMEDebbie Hannan
  • Director - Blue DepartedGareth Nicholls
  • Video Design & EditingLewis den Hertog
  • Jake Jarratt

    Cast - GAME

  • Francesca Tomlinson

    Cast - GAME

  • Reuben Joseph

    Cast - Blue Departed

  • Lorn Macdonald

    Cast - Blue Departed

  • Anna Russell-Martin

    Cast - Blue Departed