Jock: Scotland on Trial

by Alan Bissett

10 September - 13 September 2014

“You call me chippy. Parochial. Resentful. Perennial seeker of victim status. A country in search of a crisis. A twisted nationalist, nasty, never content to let things lie. A liar. A barefaced liar. A barefaced fucking liar. A cartoon character and now, apparently, a plunderer of other nations. How do I plead?”

The English premiere


Part of its Scotland Decides/Tha Alba a’taghadh2014 season to coincide with the Scottish Independence Referendum on Thursday 18 September 2014, multi-award-winning writer and performer Alan Bissett premieres a new work, posing the question: is Scotland the colonised or the coloniser?

A police interview room. Jock has been hauled in for a crime he says he didn’t commit: theft from other countries. He has been spotted at the scene but was he manipulated by his bosses? Was he there out of need? Or is Jock, as he claims, the victim of imperialism himself?

From one of the leading voices in the cultural movement for Scottish independence, Jock is a provocative and timely piece of theatre. Performed so far only as a work-in-progress, this is the first ever full production of Jock and the first time it has been seen by English audiences.

This will be a 40 minute performance, running in tandem with a 20 minute extract from The Pure, The Dead, and The Brilliant – a satire about the independence referendum – which will just have come fresh from its run at the Assembly Rooms as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

About The Writer and Performer Alan Bissett

Alan Bissett is a novelist, playwright and performer. He was Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Writer of the Year 2011. His most recent novels, Death of a Ladies' Man and Pack Men, were shortlisted for the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Fiction of the Year Prize in 2010 and 2012 respectively. His play Turbo Folk was shortlisted for Best New Play at the Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland (CATS) 2011 and Ban This Filth!, which he wrote and performed, was shortlisted for an Amnesty International Freedom of Expression of Award 2013. The short film which he wrote and narrated, The Shutdown, won numerous awards at international festivals, as well as a Scottish Bafta. He was shortlisted for Creative Scotland Writer of the Year in 2012. He is currently campaigning for a Yes vote in the Scottish independence referendum.

About The Director Cheryl Martin

Director Cheryl Martin was the Associate Director for New Writing/New Work at the Contact Theatre, Manchester and Director-in-Residence at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh. Her numerous accolades include two Manchester Evening News Awards for Best Studio Production, as both a director in 2005, for Rona Munro’s Iron (Contact Theatre, Manchester) and a writer for Heart and Soul (Coliseum Theatre, Oldham), as well as an Edinburgh Fringe First in 2009, as co-director and producer of the Breakfast Plays, The World Is Too Much (Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh). She also directed Alan Bissett’s first professional play, The Ching Room (Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh, in collaboration with Òran Mór) which was nominated for Critics' Awards for Theatre in Scotland. Cheryl has directed studio productions at Citizens Theatre, Glasgow, Sherman Cymru, Cardiff, Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, and Z-Arts, and main stage productions at the Contact Theatre, Manchester. Cheryl was also Artist-in-Residence for Manchester’s Commonwealth Games, and has had over twenty radio and stage productions as a writer, including community operas for the BBC Philharmonic and Buxton Opera Festival, as well as her recent Congolese Oratorio, Lisapo. Cheryl’s one-woman show Alaska will be coming to Manchester, as part of the Contact Theatre Flying Solo Festival, in addition to London and Glasgow, in 2015.

The Press on Playwright Alan Bissett's Previous Plays

“Hugely engaging, funny and thought-provoking.” ★★★★ The Times on Ban This Filth!

“A real Fringe gem.” ★★★★ The Independent on The Red Hourglass

“This is brilliant stuff, an exhilaratingly fresh take on the whole business of class and culture in Scotland. It’s also so funny that some in the audience were literally shouting with laughter.” ★★★★ The Scotsman on The Moira Monologues

“Exudes the same sort of self-assurance as Gregory Burke’s debut, Gagarin Way. You can see real talent at work here.” ★★★★ Metro on The Ching Room

Scotland Decides 2014

The Finborough Theatre, well known to their commitment to Scottish playwrights, presents its month long Scotland Decides/Tha Alba a'taghadh2014, a month long season to coincide with the Scottish Independence Referendum on Thursday 18 September 2014. The season includes three classic Scottish rediscoveries and a brand new play, three of which are receiving their English premieres. The sparkling 18th century satire on the Union of Scotland and England, The Flouers o'Edinburgh by Robert McLellan plays for four weeks from 2–27 September 2014; the English premiere of the Scots verse drama on the life of 'Braveheart'– The Wallace by Sydney Goodsir Smith, plays on Sundays, Mondays and Tuesdays between 7–23 September 2014; the English premiere of leading 'Yes' campaigner Alan Bissett's new play Jock: Scotland on Trial runs for four late night performances between 10–13 September 2014; and a staged reading of John McGrath's Little Red Hen – a sweeping history of 'Red Clydeside' that asks whether political self-determination is ever achievable without economic independence – receives a staged reading on the evening of referendum day itself - Thursday, 18 September 2014.

10 September - 13 September 2014

Tickets and Times

Wednesday 10:00pm
Thursday 10:00pm
Friday 10:00pm
Saturday 10:00pm

1 hour with no interval