Theatre in Wales

The latest theatre, dance and performance news

edging forwards: a new season of contemporary drama     

On The Edge celebrates its first anniversary in style this Autumn with new offerings from some of Wales’ most significant new writers, as well as presentations of contemporary “classics” by award-winning playwrights Ed Thomas and Mark Jenkins.

Patrick Jones tackles the controversial and emotive issue of absent fathers in his latest script; Ieuan Watkins the pressures facing a talented young boxer in and out of the ring. Karl Marx - recently voted the world’s greatest philosopher - puts in an appearance in Mark Jenkins’ early drama Birthmarks; one Saddam Hussein finds his way - albeit obliquely - into Neil Rhodes’ The Big Crunch.

Facing Up by Ieuan Watkins opens the season on September 14. It runs until December 14 where a grande finale will be staged complete with musicians, dragons and a rollicking farce that lifts the lid on the cultural tourism industry built up around the figure of King Arthur.

Set up just one year ago to give a platform to a growing community of Welsh-based writers, On The Edge has made its mark and won enthusiastic audiences for its intimate, passion-filled performances at the Chapter Arts Centre as well as received funding from the Arts Council of Wales.

“We present a complete work but we pare it down to the bare essentials,” explains Michael Kelligan, the actor-director who founded On The Edge. “This suits the script-in-hand delivery we use on stage, but it’s not a cheapskate subterfuge. At On The Edge, you’ll see some of the best names in Welsh drama stretch their range and you’ll have a chance to see brand new works, as well as recent “hits” which rarely get a second staging.”

This latest season draws in some of Wales’ hottest talents many of them keen to try out their latest works in an informal setting - and a pint in hand. Tucked away in the upstairs bar at Chapter, On The Edge has become one of the city’s best kept secrets, but like anything worth knowing about word-of-mouth has established it on the theatre goer’s circuit, even if there is no curtain up, or an ice cream in in the interval.

“It’s incredible how we’ve progressed in such a short space of time,” adds Michael. “I approach people who have had their plays staged around the world and they are more than happy to come along and see their work at the Media Point. In some cases, their plays would not get a chance of a revival without this project. That makes all the work behind-the-scenes so worthwhile.”

On The Edge returns to the Media Point on September 14. Performances begin at 8pm and tickets cost £3 (on the door).

Diary Listings


Media Point, Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff
September 14 8pm Tickets: £3 (on the door)
Facing Up by Ieuan Watkins

September 28 8pm Tickets: £3 (on the door)
Absents by Patrick Jones

October 4 8pm Tickets £3 (on the door)
Birthmarks by Mark Jenkins

October 19 8pm Tickets: £3 (on the door)
The Big Crunch by Neil Rhodes

November 9 8pm Tickets £3 (on the door)
Landmarks by Gary Owen

November 23 8pm Tickets: £3 (on the door)
Gas Station Angel by Ed Thomas

December 14 8pm Tickets: £3 (on the door)
A Town Like Arthur by Bob Roberts
With folk/rock band Here be Dragons!
 
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