Preview: Silk Road at Newcastle Live Theatre
Shrapnel Theatre Presents
Silk Road (How To Buy Drugs Online)
Newcastle Live Theatre
Thursday 1st & Friday 2nd February 2018
Playwright Alex Oates
Director Dominic Shaw
Starring Josh Barrow
Alex Oates' Silk Road, the first play to be funded by cryptocurrency Bitcoin, visits Live Theatre, Newcastle. First seen at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2014, this new production launches at London’s VAULT Festival before coming to Live Theatre on Thursday 1 & Friday 2 February 2018.
“How is it delivered? That’s the best bit! Royal Mail. Postman Pat brings your smack to your door with a smile and his black and white cat is none the wiser."
Bruce is nineteen, unemployed and living with his Nan. A struggling young Geordie tech-head, he’s the unlikeliest international criminal mastermind you can imagine. But sucked into an underworld dark web of new age pirates, local gangsters and tea cosies, it isn’t long before Bruce discovers how easy it is to buy narcotics online.
Following a call-out on the real Silk Road forums for contributions to the original production's crowdfunding campaign, an anonymous donor donated two Bitcoin. Bitcoin value has since gone up, and plummeted, gone up again, and is currently going down again. Two Bitcoin are currently worth $24,750 (about £19,000), and playwright Alex Oates will now be funding the entire production with cryptocurrency.
Alex Oates, originally from Whitley Bay, has been shortlisted for the Old Vic 12 and longlisted for both the Bruntwood Prize and Papatango Prize, with previous work including Pig and Rules for Being a Man (UK tours). Alex attended Valley Gardens Middle and Whitley Bay High Schools. His love for theatre began at the Phoenix Youth Theatre in Blyth and further developed watching performances, by northern greats such as Tom Hadaway, Alan Plater and Lee Hall, at Live Theatre, Northern Stage and the Theatre Royal.
Dominic Shaw is a director from Jersey and currently associate director for Kinky Boots in the West End. Previous directing work includes A Memory for Forgetting (Arcola) and Fan Fiction (Other Palace).
Actor Josh Barrow is a member of the National Youth Theatre, has worked on the Royal Court Theatre's Open Court Project 2016, and is TriForce’s Monologue Slam National Champion 2017. He hails from Blyth and participated in the Phoenix Youth Theatre there before studying at Newcastle College.
Writer Alex Oates, Director Dominic Shaw and actor Josh Barrow will take part in a Meet the Creative Team Post Show Talk after the 7.30pm performance Thursday 1 February to discuss the making of the show followed by a question and answer session. The post show talk is free with a ticket for that evening’s show, and will also be audio recorded and available to listen again online at www.live.org.uk.
Silk Road is at Live Theatre, Broad Chare, Newcastle on Thursday 1 & Friday 2 February at 7.30pm. Tickets are £10-£14, over 60s concession £12, 25 and under plus other concessions £6. For more information or to book tickets visit www.live.org.uk or contact box office on (0191) 232 1232.