The Signalman: Winner, Best New Play at The Critics’ Awards for Theatre in Scotland, 2020
On the night of Sunday December 28, 1879, the unthinkable happened. Battered by a ferocious storm, the Tay Bridge collapsed. Tay Bridge tells the poignant and unexpected stories of the suddenly interrupted passengers making the journey that night. Who were they? Where were they going? A powerful ensemble piece, Tay Bridge gives a whole new perspective on this famous bridge disaster.
Winter 1919. Thomas Barclay is transported back in time by his memories of the night when he was the Signalman who sent the Edinburgh/Burntisland train onto the Tay Rail Bridge forty years before. Who is responsible when accidents occur? Why do we need somebody to blame…even if it’s ourselves?
‘Peter Arnott’s brilliant vignettes about a 1879 railway bridge disaster imagine the lives and hopes of passengers stalked by death. [Arnott] pulls it off brilliantly thanks to vivid writing, political nous and thematic unity.’
★★★★ The Guardian on Tay Bridge
‘a thrilling portrait of Scotland at that 19th century moment, with all its inequalities, hypocrisies, tensions and possibilities… offers an unforgettable insight into the terrible sense of shock and tragedy that swept over the city of Dundee, 140 years ago this winter.’
★★★★ The Scotsman on Tay Bridge
‘Riveting… intense… a dark exploration of fear – and of the moment you realise your fears are real… wonderfully chilling.’
★★★★★ Thom Dibdin, AllEdinburghTheatre.com on The Signalman