Twenty People A Minute

Theatre (new writing, political)

  • theSpace on the Mile - Space 3
  • 12:50
  • Aug 25
  • 1 hour
  • Suitability: 16+ (Guideline)
  • Country: United Kingdom - Scotland
  • Group: Arthur & Redpath Productions and New Celts Productions
  • Warnings and additional info: Contains distressing or potentially triggering themes, Strong language/swearing
  • Babes in arms policy: Babies do not require a ticket
  • Policy applies to: Children under 18 months


Set not too far in the future, Twenty People a Minute follows four refugees of tomorrow on a perilous journey across the earth. Over one hour we meet their dangers and the everyday angels who keep them alive. Twenty People A Minute is a play exploring the impact of global social, political, and environmental crisis on the individual, exploring what it could be like if you were forced to leave your home.

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General venue access

  • Accessible entry: Information not supplied
  • Wheelchair access type: Not fully wheelchair accessible

  • Stairs: 20+
    Number of stairs is provided as guidance and is not in addition to any wheelchair access type (lift/ramp etc) stated above.

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  • Requires a complimentary personal assistant ticket to attend a performance

Davy B 32 days ago

A brilliant, chilling experience. The incredibly emotive portrayals of the four main characters do a wonderful job of building the near dystopian future that acts as a worryingly accurate reflection of our own world. The gripping stories told by the cast throughout the piece served to highlight their suffering and the range of difficulties that they have faced. The minimalist set design lends itself to a very focused, intimate experience; at times it felt like there was no place to hide from the rawness of the stories. By the climax I truly felt like I knew the characters, and that I had experienced the hardships alongside them and was rooting for their success.
Overall it is a very different experience to many of the other shows at The Fringe, however this is nothing but a positive. It is very dark, emotional and even at times harrowing, so if you’re looking for a more serious piece then I cannot recommend it highly enough.

Tiana 36 days ago

Best show that I've seen on the fringe, although it did make me tear up! Powerful performances from the actors that really made their stories believable

Robert Litwin 36 days ago

Atctors all delivered their lines with conviction and good pace, and the premise was great with fitting charities backing the production. By all accounts, this performance had all the qualities of a great show. And now, here's my only nitpick:

Every character had a harsh story to tell and the harshness of the stories really came across in the performances of the cast . . . . when they were the focus. It was certianly a creative choice to have the actors lines overlap with each other, possibly to make a profound statement about how often so many people have to suffer so much, but I think that just hurt the individual performances. I think it would have felt more personal and important if each character was allowed to really tell their stories with no intrusion.

Again though, that's just a personal nitpick on an otherwise solid show.

Caitlin 37 days ago

Wow… where to begin with this thought-provoking piece? The writing by Samantha Robinson is both tender and powerful, heartbreaking and hopeful all at once. The rhythm and pace of the dialogue has a musicality that fits perfectly with the excellent direction by the brilliant Tom Mullins. The synchronisation of the words and the continuous flow of movement is carefully choreographed but feels like a natural build in momentum, pulling the audience into the story so you really feel as though you are travelling with the characters on their journeys across the earth to reach safety. The actors gave strong performances, portraying raw emotions and navigating complexities of several characters with depth through distressing and devastating scenes as well as ones where kindness and humanity prevail. The music composed by the talented Ian Sutherland complements the piece perfectly. This poignant play is timely and relevant, shining a light on an issue that requires far more understanding and global action, especially in the current political climate. It is no wonder this show was shortlisted for the ‘Scottish Theatre Awards’! It’s the kind of art that leaves a long-lasting impact and challenges you to ask yourself ‘what can I do to make a difference?’ Bravo to all involved!

Kirsty 37 days ago

An incredibly powerful play exploring the refugee crisis. Great writing, great acting and great direction make this a captivating and emotional performance. An absolute must-see!

Logan Craik 39 days ago

A wonderful piece of theatre that truly encapsulates what the fringe is all about. 5 Stars

Lisa 40 days ago

Make sure to catch this play before it's too late! Beautiful, strong writing. Engaging directing and characters that draw you into the story. A must-see!

sylvia dolan 40 days ago

This play was so thought provoking.
Can’t stop thinking about it hours later. Excellently written and performed. Highly recommend this show.

Hayley 42 days ago

Powerful and deeply moving. A show not to miss, particularly in the current climate. Amazing script, acting, production.

Keeley Lane 44 days ago

An accomplished and poetic script, beautiful score and elegant direction with well pitched performances. This dystopian world is scarily accurate to where we may be headed in the very near future and the script demands that we pay attention- the refugees of this world are all of us- this isn't something happening 'over there' and it doesn't allow us to feel detachment from issues that aren't 'ours' - the issues are all of ours. An urgent piece of theatre, political theatre as it should be. This team are ones to watch.

Richard Galloway 44 days ago

Saw this yesterday . Such an impactful, sensitive and challenging piece of theatre . Beautifully written and directed with a classic score to boot . It's defo a must see this year . Well done all x

Erin Ramsay 44 days ago

An incredibly thought-provoking and emotionally charged hour from start to finish! This powerful new play delves into the complex and timely issue of the refugee crisis. The exploration of each character's journey seamlessly weaves together to form captivating story of both unique and shared experiences. Each journey to Waiting Island is compelling and relatable for the audience making them engrossed from the first sounds of the crashing waves. Congratulations to the cast, fantastic writer Sam, and the wonderful Tom & Ian from A&R Productions.

A must-watch this Fringe and so important with the backdrop of the current world. This one will sit with you for a while.

Lesley Barsanti 45 days ago

Powerful, thought provoking and an absolute fringe must.

Karin Petersson 45 days ago

When a person for some reason has to flee his/her country, where is he/she then to go? What dignity remains? Which rights?
Welcome to Waiting island, the place no one wants to visit but many has no other choice but to stay at.
Highly recommended and fine piece of theatre on a very important topic.

Katie Slater 48 days ago

A brilliant piece of high quality theatre that is so fresh and relevant. The show is complex but the creative staging from Tom communicates the story in a clear and engaging way. Fantastic actors too! Highly, highly recommend ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Sarah Heney 48 days ago

An extraordinarily intense hour following four refugees of the future as they travel across the earth, each battling dark nights of the soul and encountering real life earth angels along the way.
By the end I felt as if my emotions had been turned inside out and I realised I was silently weeping.
It's real and it's raw.
Congratulations Tom Mullins, Samantha Robson and Ian Sutherland on an incredible and powerful piece of theatre that will haunt me for a long time to come..

Jess 49 days ago

A must-see this year! An immersive and thought-provoking piece that takes you on four independent journeys, simultaneously.

The performances of each actor were equally heartbreaking and intriguing, I was shocked how connected I felt to each individual storyline in just a hour long slot.

Everything from the staging to the beautifully haunting score was meticulously crafted by the talented duo behind AR Productions, Tom Mullins and Ian Sutherland. Paired with a poignant and relevant piece of new writing set in the not so distant future - this felt like the perfect fit.

This one will stick with you - I’m still thinking about it 5 days later!

Ayesha 50 days ago

A beautifully moving and thought provoking show. The performances are nuanced and the writing is very intelligently crafted to weave four supposedly disconnected stories into one. With powerful and immersive direction and a delicate score I was taken into the world of the refugees and left questioning how we can do more to help those most in need. 5 *****. A must see!

Gabriel 50 days ago

A wonderful show: touching, nerve-racking, tragic, inspiring, beautiful... I could go on, but words don't do it justice; you just have to see it!

We follow four people who are looking for a safe haven somewhere, anywhere. They are no longer sure where they are from; they have no idea where they are headed. The audience is kept right alongside them, fumbling in the dark, evading traps, capture, death. It borrows from absurdist drama (à la Godot) to speak if the human condition; from magical realism poetry for the imagery; and from real life politics for the stakes. With stellar performances and beautiful writing, definitely a show worth seeing.

Lev Siegel 50 days ago

I love this show, I have the pleasure of being close with the four actors on stage...and they move mountains with their performances :) the physical elements of the sea and the dirt and the sweat and the blood bring you into the scape and the actors carry you through their stories of flight. intense, very emotional, so well performed. Enjoy!

Morven 51 days ago

A compelling piece that keeps you on the edge of your seat for the entire hour. The way the performers and other creatives involved manage to craft such a strong sense of journey and emotion is breathtaking. By leaving some details unsaid, you're left as an audience member to fill in the gaps with your own experiences and can see elements of yourself or people you know and love in all of the characters - bringing to life what it might be like if you, too, were experiencing the challenges so many people are currently facing. Twenty People A Minute is moving, captivating, and will leave you wanting to take action for change.

Roel Fox 51 days ago

This is a piece compassionately conveying the unreasonable pressures that refugees have to go through. Throughout the performance it conveys the sense of holding your breath, desperately figuring out the next step as every next step is one taken for survival. The language is poetic and ethereal whilst still always feeling like words that could come out of our own mouths day to day. As the piece came to a close I could breathe again and it was to sob heartily for the thousands of people whom the actors passionately represented. Excellent writing, excellent direction, excellent performance and excellent soundscape.
I think it's fair to call this in most certain terms, an Urgent piece of theatre.
Go see.
And then...

Anne 51 days ago

This was my first Fringe show of 2023 and did not disappoint. This outstanding play, directed by the highly talented Tom Mullins with the soundtrack composed by the equally gifted Ian Sutherland is compelling, thought provoking and poignant . It deals with the hugely important issue of the increasing , global number of refugees and definitely resonated with the audience . It’s a must see - it has set a high bar and here’s hoping the rest of my Fringe experience continues in the same vein.

Sean Davis 52 days ago

Twenty People A Minute (***)
We follow the simultaneous treks of four disparate refugees to their common goal of Waiting Island in the middle of a sea. The play has the characters speak in unison whenever more than one of them has a common experience. The frequent use of loud background sounds and the actors taking quick turns speaking added to a feeling of frantic chaos, but also made it difficult for me, and others, to understand what they were saying, particularly the quiet actor. Many others gave it five stars.

This is the 23nd most enjoyable of the 36 shows I have seen so far at the Fringe this year. I hope to see almost 200. You may see my other three-sentence reviews, in order from most enjoyable to worst, at my non-commercial website:

Blair 52 days ago

This show was an awe inspiring piece about the possibilities of what could happen within our future. Hard hitting at times, but relevant and poignant within modern day Britain and the world. If you are looking for a play to make you think and reflect, this is for you. Loved the performance by Michael and Melissa, and the script was a really innovate way to illustrate the concept of multiple perspectives at once. Highly recommend!!!

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Theatre Travels 31 days ago

This is a thought provoking, goosebump raising piece of new theatre that is executed brilliantly.

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North West End UK (5/5 stars) 41 days ago

If you see anything on the Fringe this year, make it this show!

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Scots Gay Arts (4/5 stars) 47 days ago

"An Ethereal Experience"

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The Scots Reviewer (4/5 stars) 47 days ago

This play has a powerful message with a critical, ever-increasingly relevant story and performed well. It would be well-suited for use within a school setting to help inform the young minds of tomorrow.

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All Edinburgh Theatre (5/5 stars) 47 days ago

Politically aware, poetically staged, and displaying understanding of both people and theatre, Twenty People a Minute (from Arthur & Redpath and New Celts at theSpace on the Mile) is nothing short of a triumph.

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