2014 eh? One helluva year…

3 Nov

So this was probably the biggest year of many of our lives, but it was definitely the biggest of mine. Here’s the rundown of what has been an exhausting 2014.

Copyright Sean Purser

Copyright Sean Purser

FEBRUARY – I run for Rector of Glasgow University, in an election which is won by the little-known Edward Snowden.  I also sell the Big Issue for a day as part of the Big Sell-Off, helping the homeless.

MARCH – I’m interviewed by Janet Street-Porter for her BBC documentary about the referendum.

APRIL – My one-man show about pornography and radical feminism, Ban This Filth!, directed by Sacha Kyle, is performed at the Arches’ Behaviour festival, Glasgow, and tours the Highlands. I also preview an extract from my forthcoming Edinburgh Fringe play, The Pure the Dead and the Brilliant, at the SNP conference in Aberdeen, which kicks off a month-long beasting from a rabidly pro-Union press, including this gem.

MAY – My new play, Jock: Scotland on Trial, about Scotland’s colonial past, debuts at Mayfesto in the Tron theatre. Directed by Cheryl Martin and starring myself and the Tron’s Andy Arnold.

JUNE – Another new play, Jacquoranda, directed by Kenny Miller, has its debut run in Perthshire. Louise McCarthy nails it – drunkenly – in the title role.

JULYBorn Under a Union Flag: Rangers, Britain and Scottish Independence, a collection of essays edited by myself and Alasdair McKillop, is published by Luath Press.  I take part in National Collective’s tour of Scotland, Yestival, and have a new poem published in their Inspired by Independence anthology.  Also, I tour Slovakia, Poland and the Czech Republic for the Authors’ Reading Month festival.

AUGUST – Yet another new play, about the referendum this time.  The Pure, the Dead and the Brilliant stars Elaine C Smith and Paul James Corrigan, is directed by Sacha Kyle, and is entirely crowdfunded from Yes supporters.  It sells out 24 days in the Assembly Rooms at the Edinburgh Fringe.

SEPTEMBER – I perform Jock: Scotland on Trial for four nights at the Finborough Theatre, London.  Later that month, Scotland cuts the wrong wire. But it’s okay. It now realises its mistake.

OCTOBER – I preview an extract of my work-in-progress, Souness, directed by Sacha Kyle, with myself in the title role, at the Tron theatre, Glasgow. This play will be produced in 2016, thirty years since Graeme Souness joined Rangers as player-manager.

NOVEMBER – Four of my spooky stories are broadcast on BBC Radio Scotland.

DECEMBER – And rest.

COMING UP

FEBRUARY – Release of my Collected Plays, published by Freight.

I’m also working on a new novel, two new plays, including Souness, and a documentary film about the referendum.

The Pure, The Dead and The Brilliant

9 Sep

What would happen if the bogles, banshees, demons and selkies of Scots folklore were involved in the independence referendum?

The Pure, The Dead and The Brilliant was performed at the Edinburgh Fringe from July 31st to August 24th 2014 and was described as “inventive, funny, enthralling theatre” (The Big Issue), “Clever and crowd-pleasing” (Variety), and “a stunning piece of theatre” (Time Magazine). For those of you unable to get hold of a ticket, National Collective have filmed the show and you can watch it completely free below:

September dates

4 Sep

Hi all! Big month for me, this one. Big month for EVERYONE! I’ll be out and about on:

Jock

Jock: Scotland on Trial

5th Sept (Fri) @ Holytown Community Centre. Yes Holytown (near Motherwell) Case for Yes event. I’ll be speaking alongside trade unionist and RIC founder Cat Boyd and Robin McAlpine from the Jimmy Reid Foundation and Commonweal. 7pm start.
6th Sept (Sat) @ Dunoon Book Festival. 6pm start, and tickets are just £3, available from Bookpoint and Dunoon Burgh Hall.
7th Sept (Sun) @ Hallglen Sports Centre. Yes Falkirk public meeting. I’ll be speaking alongside Elaine C Smith, Zara Kitson (Green Party) and former MSP Colin Fox. 7:30pm start, with more information available here.
10th-13th Sept @ Finborough Theatre, London. Jock: Scotland on Trial. The first ever full production of Jock and the first time it has been seen by English audiences. Running in tandem with a 20 minute extract from The Pure, The Dead, and The Brilliant. 10pm start, all tickets £10 and available here.
22nd Sept (Mon) @ Smith Museum and Art Gallerty, Stirling Fringe. Ban This Filth! last year’s Edinburgh Fringe solo show having its FINAL EVER PERFORMANCE. 7:30pm start, tickets are £7/6 and available here.
25th Sept (Thurs) @ AK Bell Library, Perth. Stand-up Literature comedy gig. 7.30pm start.
26th Sept (Fri) @ The Sunart Centre, Strontian. As part of the Three Lochs Book and Arts Festival, I’ll be introducing the Spielberg classic, Jaws, and there will be sushi and fishy snacks to enjoy. £5 on the door, 7pm opening, 8pm film start. For more info, click here.
27th Sept (Sat) @ The Sunart Centre, Strontian. I’ll be running a Writers’ Workshop which you can attend with a £10 day ticket (available from local outlets, with more info here).

A.x

For Falkirk’s Sake

23 Jul

From July 27th – August 2nd Falkirk is home to a new artist-run festival. For Falkirk’s Sake features films, music, plays and spoken word, and I’ll be taking part on Wednesday 30th July. I’ll be doing a compilation of my ‘best bits’ from 7:30pm at Behind The Wall (Alehouse) and afterwards there is a showcase of Falkirk talent including Gordon Legge and Janet Paisley.
Tickets are just £7 and are available at the Steeple Box Office, Falkirk High Street, or by phoning 01324 506850.

The Pure, The Dead, and The Brilliant

15 Jul

The Pure, The Dead, and The Brilliant

What would happen if the bogles, banshees, demons and selkies of Scots folklore were involved in the independence referendum? Elaine C Smith leads a cast of some of Scotland’s finest actors, and surprise cameos, in Alan Bissett’s sparkling satire.

The Pure, The Dead, and The Brilliant runs from July 31st to August 24th at The Ballroom, The Assembly Rooms, Edinburgh, as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Tickets are available here and you can RSVP here.

Jacquoranda

29 May

Grab a drink and pull up a chair for a group therapy session with a difference!

Jacqueline (pure name “Jacquoranda”) has seen the light. She’s conquered her demons, achieved inner peace and met the man of her dreams. Or has she?

Put yourself in Jacquoranda’s hands in this highly interactive and entertaining play by Alan Bissett and let her guide you through a voyage of self-discovery. Or something like that. Just make sure you keep an eye on your drink at all times!

As Jacquoranda teeters on the edge of the wagon, she slowly reveals the truth behind her newly enlightened status and the audience, in turn, achieve a breakthrough of their own. Just not the one you’re expecting…

Various venues:
Tue 17 Jun: 8pm The Green Hotel, Kinross
Wed 18 Jun: 8pm Kenmore Hotel, Kenmore
Thu 19 Jun: 8pm McKays Bar & Restaurant, Pitlochry
Fri 20 Jun: 8pm The Famous Grouse Experience, Crieff
Tue 24 Jun: 8pm Blair Atholl Village Hall, Blair Atholl
Wed 25 Jun: 8pm Dunning Hotel, Dunning
Thu 26 Jun: 6pm Taybank Hotel, Dunkeld
Fri 27 Jun: 8pm Redrooms, Perth Theatre
Fri 28 Jun: 8pm Redrooms, Perth Theatre

£5; no concessions
Age guidance: 16+

Tickets are available to book here.

Yes in the Park

28 May

Yes in the Park is an event being organised centrally within Lanarkshire to promote the benefits of Scottish Independence. It will take place in Strathclyde Park on Saturday 7th of June, featuring guest speakers and live music, and I will be onstage at 1:20pm.

Tickets are free and available here.

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