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Europe

Two refugees turn up on the platform a provincial railway station somewhere in Europe just as the station is about to be closed down: a symbol of the town’s post communist decline. The presence of the two refugees unsettles people. Some like Fret the stationmaster and Adele, his assistant, are drawn to the newcomers. Others like Berlin and his gang, unemployed young men, feel threatened. The refugees presence becomes the catalyst for a story about the desire to escape and the need to put down roots at a time of shifting certainties.

‘I like believing in things that aren’t true. That’s what faith is.’

I read, in a guidebook, the story of an area in Bukovina which had been crossed by so many invading armies that they built their wooden churches on wheels so that, in the event of passing armies, the church could be wheeled into the forest and hidden. I thought about those villagers and the idea of the town on the border emerged.

Title: Europe
Premier Place and Date: Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh 1994
Director and Producing Company: Philip Howard, Traverse Theatre
Publication Details: Methuen ISBN 0413708802 and in “Greig Plays 1” ISBN 0413772535
Translation Details: Swedish, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian
Foreign Performances:
Awards, Prizes: None
Characters: 7 (Male – 5 Female – 2)