A Machine they're Secretly Building at Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017

Summerhall, Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom

Tuesday, February 28, 2017 - 19:00

Proto-type Theater speak up, speak out, and blow the whistle on global surveillance in A MACHINE THEY’RE SECRETLY BUILDING at Summerhall this August – part of the 20th Anniversary British Council showcase at Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017.

Taking inspiration from a quote from Edward Snowden, and written and directed by Andrew Westerside, the show charts a course from the ‘Top Secret’ secrets of WWI intelligence through to 9/11, Snowden’s revelations and the terror of a future that might already be upon us.

From what might be a news desk, an office, a bunker under a mountain or a theatre, performers Rachel Baynton and Gillian Lees unleash a compelling and “articulate wail of anger” (British Theatre Guide) at the insidious machine of surveillance.

The company have combined original text and classified intelligence documents, with film from digital artist Adam York Gregory, and music and sound design by Paul J. Rogers, to expose spying, lying, and vent their frustration. A MACHINE THEY’RE SECRETLY BUILDING is about how we got to the point where our governments are spying on us, and how that’s changing who we are – “a great antidote to 2017’s tangled political and cultural landscape” (Exeunt). 


Watch the trailer here: https://vimeo.com/202754322

Watch an interview with writer and director, Andrew Westerside here: https://youtu.be/QfW5qO7FH6k


**** “The kind of theatre that seeps into the sub-conscious” – The List

**** “We are being called to arms. A Machine… is an alarm clock, waking us up.” – The Wee Review

*** “Baynton and Lees’ performances are compelling… their message is forceful, their campaign as vivid as the lurid pink balaclavas they often don.” – The Reviews Hub



2017 Dates

EDINBURGH FRINGE FESTIVAL | Part of the BRITISH COUNCIL SHOWCASE | TUE 15 - SUN 27 | festival17.summerhall.co.uk

FARNHAM | FARNHAM MALTINGS | TUE 3 OCT | farnhammaltings.com

LONDON | SOUTHBANK CENTRE | THUR 9 - SAT 11 NOV | southbankcentre.co.uk


WATCH THE #AMTSB TRAILER >>> https://vimeo.com/202754322



Written and directed by Andrew Westerside

Devised and performed by Rachel Baynton and Gillian Lees

Digital design and artwork by Adam York Gregory

Original music and sound design by Paul J. Rogers

Stage Manager Thomas Marcinek

Producer Gillian Lees | Consultant Producer Matt Burman

A Machine They’re Secretly Building was Commissioned by Lincoln Performing Arts Centre (Lincoln), Warwick Arts Centre (Warwick) and hÅb (Manchester. Supported by Tramway, Glasgow, Lancaster Arts at Lancaster University, the Britten-Pears Foundation and The National Lottery through Arts Council England.

Touring throughout 2017   

United Kingdom
Summerhall, Edinburgh, EH9 1PL
Part of: 
05 August 2017 to 29 August 2017

Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2017

Part of: