Casting Announcement: LINES

The Yard Theatre presents


Written by: Pamela Carter
Directed by: Jay Miller
Designed by Alex Lowde with lighting by Martin Langthorne, sound by Josh Grigg and music composition and arrangement by Manni Dee.

Tuesday 27 October – Saturday 21 November 2015


When there’s nothing to do, make war.

Jay Miller directs Pamela Carter’s blistering new play Lines, an urgent and timely study exposing the consequences of peace and the violence inherent in us all.

We meet our young lads as civilians and watch them transform into soldiers. They finish their training and are unleashed into an unknown peacetime. But what do soldiers do when there’s no one to fight?

2015 will be the first year the British Army won’t be at war for over a century. This is a play made in response to that prospect.

The Yard’s Artistic Director Jay Miller (The Mikvah Project) and writer Pamela Carter (Skåne, Confessions of a Justified Sinner) have been speaking with retired soldiers, children who want to join the army, and soldiers currently serving our country. After the sold-out successes of The Mikvah Project and Beyond Caring (National Theatre), the third in-house show at The Yard will incorporate an explosive techno score, angelic choral singing and four young men all desperate to be a hero.

The cast is Tony Clay (Locke), Ncuti Gatwa (Valentine), Tom Gill (Perk), and Robbie O’Neill (Mackay). Lines is the accommodation in our barracks, where our soldiers sleep. It is where they clean their laundry, their weapons and their bodies.

Pamela Carter’s writing credits include the acclaimed Paul Bright’s Confessions of a Justified Sinner, which recently enjoyed a successful revival as part of the Edinburgh International Festival. Other plays are An Argument About Sex and Slope, Skåne (Hampstead Theatre Downstairs) – winner of the New Writing Commission at the Berliner Festspiele Stückemarkt 2012); Wildlife for Magnetic North Theatre Company (2011); What We Know (directed by Pamela in a co-production with Traverse Theatre in 2010).

Jay Miller founded The Yard in 2011 in collaboration with Practice Architecture and a dedicated team of volunteers. The Yard was built to offer opportunities for artists to make contemporary theatre in a new space, in a new part of town. In 2013 Jay was named by The Guardian as one of the most influential people working in culture today. He also won the British Council Creative Entrepreneur Award 2013, part of the hclub 100. As part of this he travelled to Brazil in April 2013 with the British Council to expand his international network, learn and share ideas. Jay’s directing credits include The Mikvah Project, a new play by Josh Azouz, which received outstanding reviews.

For press information and reviewing tickets please contact Clióna Roberts on 020 7704 6224 / 07754 756504 or e-mail
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Listings Information

The Yard Theatre

Unit 2A Queen’s Yard

White Post Lane

Hackney Wick

London E9 5EN


Performances and Tickets


27, 28, 29 October at 8pm. Previews: £12.50/10 conc.

30, 31 October at 8pm £15/12.50 conc.

2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 November at 8pm. £15/12.50 conc.

9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 November at 8pm. £15/12.50 conc.

16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 November at 8pm. £15/12.50 conc.


Buy tickets online:


Cast Biographies

Tony Clay – Locke

Tony graduated from Arts Educational School of Acting in 2013. He joins the cast of Lines following his “scorching” stage debut in Albion (Bush Theatre). His television work includes Foyle’s War; and for film, The Second Coming and An Ordinary Life.

Ncuti Gatwa – Valentine

Ncuti was one of this year’s nominees for the Ian Charleson Award for his performance as Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet at Home, Manchester. Recent stage work also includes 946 (Kneehigh) and Shakespeare in Love (Duke of York’s Theatre).

Tom Gill – Perk

Tom’s stage work includes Buckets (Orange Tree Theatre), Dunsinane (RSC/National Theatre of Scotland) and ZigZag ZigZag (Manchester International Festival). Film credits include Eden Lake. As a spoken word artist Tom was recently commissioned by Channel 4.

Robbie O’Neill – Mackay

Robbie’s stage work includes Club 44 (Soho Theatre), Shakespeare’s Pericles (Redgrave Theatre) and The Last Days of Mankind (Bristol Old Vic). His television work includes Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell and Father Brown.

BRENDA: Interview with Alison O’Donnell

We caught up with Alison O’Donnell to talk theatre and how becoming BRENDA has been for her…

Tell us a bit about your career in theatre so far…

My career in theatre has tended towards new writing. Perhaps it’s because I’m shit at Shakespeare. That’s not for me to say. New writing is extremely collaborative. Often the writer is heavily involved in the rehearsal process so the play can evolve and change right up until press night. It’s exciting. You can’t be precious. Things get cut, things get added – sometimes at the last minute, but it’s incredibly creative. It’s also a real treat to originate a character – nobody can compare you unfavourably with the 6 actors who’ve played the part before.

What makes BRENDA an exciting show for you?

The name of the play is my character’s name. That makes me feel like the big man. But seriously – BRENDA is like nothing I’ve ever worked on or even seen before. Emma, the writer, has been exceptionally brave in my opinion. She had a very clear vision and was uncompromising when it came to taking risks. The piece is completely original, asks profound questions about modern life but in a formally and structurally innovative and unique way. The first time I read it I felt slightly short of breath.

How does your work with BRENDA differ from other work you’ve done?

I’ve never done a 2-hander before. We’re both on stage the entire time. You can’t run back to your dressing room for a quick pee and to check that your nose is clean while someone else does a monologue. Emma asked me early on in rehearsals how it felt to perform the piece. I decided to be rigorously honest with her. I told her ‘it’s fucking no man’s land out there’. We are totally exposed. The piece is deliberately un-theatrical so there is literally nowhere to hide. It’s thrilling and terrifying and I love it.

What are your biggest influences for your role working on BRENDA?

There are none. No one has ever played someone who doesn’t think they are a person before. It hasn’t been done. We’ve had to figure it out for ourselves.

What other shows are you looking forward to seeing or being part of this autumn?

The Hightide Festival is always amazingly fun. I can’t wait to see the other three plays next week. I’m also super excited about Linda at the Royal Court. Penelope Skinner writes female characters better than anyone else I can think of AND IT ALSO HAS KIM CATTRALL IN IT. KIM CATTRALL.

£5 tickets for BRENDA to celebrate excellent reviews

Following excellent reviews in the press, for 48 hours we’re offering you £5 tickets to see BRENDA

E V Crowe’s absorbing new play interrogates what it feels like to be alive right now.

★★★★ – The Guardian

★★★★ – The Telegraph

★★★★ – The Stage

‘Visionary and magical’ – The Telegraph

‘Alison O’Donnell and Jack Tarlton perform excellently’ – The Guardian

‘Crowe flirts with some immense questions’ – A Younger Theatre

To get £5 tickets for previews please use the promo code:


To get £10 tickets for the rest of the run until 17 October use the promo code:


Please note that this offer is only valid until Thursday 17 September, 5pm.



This week we have some of our favourites returning back to The Yard. Knickerbocker III will be back on Friday night with their favourite ‘Shot Girl’ Katy Baird and the Legendary Section 6 Saturday night with their sixth edition to The Yard.


Knickerbocker III will be back with us this Friday night bringing you a night full of Queers, Dancing, Tequila and the best ‘Shot Girl’ Katy Baird. What is different about Katy’s ‘Shot Girl’? You’ll have to come and find out yourself! As well as a special performance art dance, PRETTY COYOTE from the warped mind of Lucy McCormick.

Still not convinced? DJ’s Aaronzimbra and Alex Lawless will be with us all night to spin an upbeat mix of pop, indie and house for all the movers and shakers.

Doors open: 10pm – 3am

Price: £3 before midnight – £5 after.


Saturday gives you a different flavour in Queen’s Yard with Section 6.5 returning for their sixth edition.  Expect a unique curation of Dark, Brooding and Atmospheric sounds from legendary and emerging artist in London.

Scott Fraser, Black Merlin and Mike Levitt will be doing what they do best on the decks!

CAUTION: Come early as this night always sells out quickly.

Doors open: 10pm – 4am

Price: £8 all night.