July to September 2012 | July to September Season 


by Kieran Lynn

The run of this show at the Finborough has now ended.

The Finborough Theatre world premiere production transfers to the West End from 20 August 2012

Trafalgar Studios 2, 14 Whitehall, London SW1A 2DY

20 August – 15 September 2012

Monday to Saturday at 7.45pm*; Thursday and Saturday at 3.00pm

*Press Night on Wednesday 22 August at 7.00pm

Tickets:  £20.00 (£15 concessions)

Box Office:  0844 871 7632 or0844 871 7632



The World Premiere

★★★★ Four Stars, The Good Review
★★★★ Four Stars, WhatsOnStage
★★★★ Four Stars, Everything Theatre
★★★★ Four Stars, OneStopArts
★★★★ Four Stars, Time Out 

“When we came for a romantic walk in the park, we didn’t think we would be involved in an international crisis...This side of the line, that side of the line. Does it really make that much of a difference which side I am from?”

When a country's new border is drawn, a couple are divided by the line. Under the rigorous eyes of a brand new border guard, they are trapped in an increasingly absurd nightmare, stuck in between two aggressive nations on the verge of war. A comic new play exploring the imaginary lines that divide us and the severe penalties for breaking them...

The world premiere of the full-length version of a new play by acclaimed young playwright, Kieran Lynn. A shorter version of An Incident at the Border was first seen at Òran Mór in Glasgow as part of David MacLennan's acclaimed A Play, A Pie and A Pint series of lunchtime theatre. It was recently recorded and broadcast on BBC Radio 4.



Playwright Kieran Lynn trained as an actor at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, and works as a director and playwright. He has been a member of the Royal Court Young Writers programme, the Playwrights Studio Scotland mentoring programme, the BBC Sparks Residential Course and the Old Vic 24 Hour Plays. He recently completed a year long attachment at Hampstead Theatre. Kieran’s plays include The Recurring Rise and Fall (Hampstead Theatre), An Advert for the Army (Òran Mór, Glasgow), A Volunteer from the Audience (Everyman Theatre, Liverpool) and Pushing Up Poppies (Hill Street Theatre, Edinburgh, and Theatre503 London). Forthcoming productions include The Last Dictator (Òran Mór, Glasgow), The Bicycle Thieves, a new play based on the Italian film of the same name (Create Festival, London, in the Olympic Park) and his latest play Bunnies, produced by the Bike Shed Theatre, winner of a Peter Brook Empty Space Award, which will transfer to London later this year. 


Director Bruce Guthrie trained at the Guildford School of Acting (BA Hons in Acting) and on the National Theatre Directors Course. Directing includes Staff Director at the National Theatre on Mother Courage and Her Children, The Observer and Burnt by the Sun.  Twelfth Night (Fort Canning Park, Singapore), Hitchcock Blonde (Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff), Karen’s Wishes (Mayfair Theatre), Gloucestershire (Arcola Theatre), Stories by Heart (National Theatre), The Actresses Franchise League (Novello Theatre and Prince of Wales Theatre),The Long and the Short and the Tall (Pleasance London), Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me (The Venue, Leicester Square, and Gateway Studio Theatre, Edinburgh). Associate Direction includes The Bridge Project's Richard III (Old Vic, BAM and International Tour), All My Sons (Apollo Theatre) andYou Can’t Take It With You (Southwark Playhouse). Assistant Direction includes The Girl with a Pearl Earring (Theatre Royal Haymarket and Cambridge Arts Theatre) and The Lord of the Rings (Theatre Royal, Drury Lane). Resident Direction includes Shadowlands (Novello Theatre). Bruce was Artistic Director of Creative First Theatre from 2004 to 2007, an Assistant Producer for Andrew Welch Ltd in 2008, and is currently Associate Artistic Director of PapaTango Theatre Company.


Tom Bennett 
Trained at the Guildford School of Acting.
Theatre includes Pushing Up Poppies (Theatre 503), The Merry Wives Of Windsor, She Stoops To Conquer, Marat Sade, Accidental Death Of An Anarchist, Country Wife and For Services Rendered (GSA).   Film includes Shadow Dancer, Breathe, Franklyn and Blessed.   
Television includes Phoneshop, Upstairs Downstairs, The Hunt For Tony Blair, Silent Witness,Doctors, Minder, Pulling, Holby Blue, Mistresses, Love Soup, Midsomer Murders, Booze Cruise, EastEnders, Foyle’s War, My Hero, Red Cap and The Worst Week Of My Life.   

Florence Hall                                                  

At the Finborough Theatre, Florence appeared in You May Go Now – A Marriage Play (2009). 
Trained at Drama Centre. 
Theatre includes Birdsong (Comedy Theatre), The Importance Of Being Earnest (Library Theatre, Manchester), Middlemarch (Richmond Theatre), The Kitchen, In A Foreign Bed, As You Like It, The Second Mrs Tanqueray, You Can't Take It With You, The Changeling, The Prince of Homburg, Paradise Lost and Richard III (Drama Centre). 
Film includes Truth Or Dare and The Telemachy. 
Television includes Big Bad World, May Day, Holby City, Jonathan Creek and Doctors.

Marc Pickering 

Trained at the Guildford School of Acting. Theatre includes The Honeymoon Suite (Hull Truck Theatre), The Merchant Of Venice (Arcola Theatre), The Elephant Man (Trafalgar Studios), The Wizard Of Oz (Royal and Derngate Theatres, Northampton), The Glee Club (Hull Truck Theatre) and The Long And The Short And The Tall (Pleasance London). 
Film includes Sleepy Hollow, Calender Girls, The Warning, Kill Keith, The Best Years, The Task, I Want Candy, Cashback, Secret Passage and The Queen Of Sheba’s Pearls. 
Television includes Cricklewood Greats, Fried Brain Sandwich, Britain's Got The Pop Factorand Dalziel and Pascoe.


"As young playwrights go, Kieran Lynn is notable for the sheer guts with which he animates big, frightening ideas on stage." Joyce MacMillan, The Scotsman on Bunnies.

"A masterpiece...Combining comedy, irony and considerable profundity."  Three Weeks Magazine on Pushing Up Poppies.

"Takes a fresh look at the familiar and very dark period of human history." The Scotsman on Pushing Up Poppies.

“A profoundly entertaining experience which deserves a viewing” **** Four Stars, Nick Marks TVBomb on Pushing Up Poppies.


“A genuinely funny piece of writing.” Emily Kumar, Time Out 

“Playwright Kieran Lynn triumphs here with a sharp, modern satire on a timeless topic.bracingly radical and coherently argued.”  Alison Goldie, WhatsOnStage 

“A very intelligent and witty piece of writing which succeeds in making the audience laugh and think about how ridiculous it all is.”  Everything Theatre 

“Short, sweet and very punchy.”  Everything Theatre

“Covering a surprising amount of serious political and human ground in its short running time without for a second taking itself too seriously, Bruce Guthrie's production is a little gem.”  Nick730, Partially Obscured View 

“A quirky, entertaining play.”  Becky Brewis, One Stop Arts 

“In the same way that the Finborough Theatre itself punches well above its weight in the size-to-quality ratio, An Incident At The Border successfully tackles rather a lot of humanity’s foibles in quite a short space of time.”  Jamie Read, Bargain Theatre

“I have never seen a play where I was so mesmerised that it felt like two seconds of my life had flown by rather than eighty minutes. I felt out of place leaving the theatre – desperate to go back....When you finally stumble over that little unique, beautiful and honest piece you’ve been waiting for as a passionate theatre-goer, a round of applause at the curtain call doesn’t quite seem enough.”  Camilla Gurtler, A Younger Theatre  

“An insightful comment on group-think, the so called political and non-political classes and the ways in which we all draw our own boundaries through life, and it is exceptionally well handled in Bruce Guthrie’s production.”  Jamie Read, Bargain Theatre 

“This is a great and politically relevant joke made into an hilarious play. It demonstrates in every department a staggering amount of potential and shouldn’t be missed.”  Kieran James, The Good Review

“A clever satire about political boundaries, individualism versus being a cog in a machine, thinking for yourself versus blind obedience and the eternal war between the sexes.”  Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Poignant and funny.”  Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“A cross between Ionesco and Kafka, filtered through a large dose of silly comedy.”  Nick730, Partially Obscured View 

“Walks the line between humour and social commentary as so many brilliant comedies do.”  Kieran James, The Good Review 

“Enough silliness to make it memorable and enough reality to make it believable.”  Kieran James, The Good Review 

“Beautifully written and breathtakingly charming. The dialogue is clever and spot on, there’s never a word too much and the comic timing is as stunning as the border guard’s stun gun itself.”  Camilla Gurtler, A Younger Theatre 

“Lynn creates an undercurrent of typical male/female flashpoints which generate many rueful laughs.”  Alison Goldie, WhatsOnStage 

“The cast works organically together and bounce off each other making it one of those rare, electrical experiences that still tingles in your bones hours after you’ve left the theatre.”  Camilla Gurtler, A Younger Theatre 

“It is a pleasure to see such young and promising talent in London’s commercialised theatre industry.”  Camilla Gurtler, A Younger Theatre 

“Brought to life brilliantly by three very different but equally good performances.”  Everything Theatre 

“Marc Pickering plays his role as the wide-eyed pedant with great enthusiasm and real quality timing.” Kieran James, The Good Review 

“Marc Pickering is excellent.”  Emily Kumar, Time Out 

“Marc Pickering as the newly appointed border guard delivers another strong performance, balancing the vulnerability of Reiver with the newly-found sense of importance that comes with his uniform and radio.  From being the buffoon of the piece early on, there are some genuine and poignant moments of pathos as his character tries to break free and make a stand.”  Jamie Read, Bargain Theatre

“Marc Pickering convinces as the little cog in the machine who feels powerful ruling his own little fiefdom.”  Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Marc Pickering is wet-your-pants-crying-out-loud funny.”  Camilla Gurtler, A Younger Theatre 

“Mark Pickering...funny.”  Becky Brewis, One Stop Arts 

“Tom Bennett, who is incredible, he casually mumbles and shrugs his way through most of the play with such a captivating ease, he’s the sort of actor you want to write plays for.”  Kieran James, The Good Review 

“Tom Bennett delivers character-comedy gold as Arthur.”  Jamie Read, Bargain Theatre

“Tom Bennett is very good as the laid-back Arthur who might be good for a surprise.”  Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Bennett is downbeat and completely believable. He is a pleasure to watch throughout.”  Becky Brewis, One Stop Arts 

“The top comedy honours have to go to the adorable Bennett, whose dialogue as the hapless Arthur is perfectly matched by his halting, embarrassed delivery - his desperate smile as he tries to think of a way out of whatever hole he's just dug himself into is a thing of genius and had me grinning through much of the play.”  Nick730, Partially Obscured View

“Florence Hall conveys the vitality and involvement of the energetic Olivia.”  Carolin Kopplin, UK Theatre Network

“Hall was excellent; independent at times, vulnerable at others.”  Everything Theatre 

“Directed with great wit and economy by Bruce Guthrie.”  Alison Goldie, WhatsOnStage 

“[Reminds you of] just how high the standards are at the Finborough. This was my first trip back there since we interviewed their Artistic Director Neil McPherson a couple of months ago, and my first show there since March, and it was long overdue. Every independent venue we visit is a treat, but there is something particularly special about the Finborough, possibly because it consistently delivers the slickest and most professional fringe (or ‘off off West End’) productions that you can find in London.”  Everything Theatre 

“The wonderfully cool auditorium of the Finborough.”  Everything Theatre


The run of this show at the Finborough has now ended.


 Please see above for West End booking details




Directed by Bruce Guthrie.

Designed by Sophia Simensky.

Lighting by Humphrey McDermott.

Music by Alexander Duggan and Louise Morgan.

Sound by Paul Roberts.

Presented by Stephen McGill in association with Neil McPherson for the Finborough Theatre