The Sound of My Voice Media Release

MEDIA RELEASE (26 May 2009)
For immediate use

The Citizens Theatre presents
An extraordinary portrayal of one man’s struggle with alcoholism

****Metro   ****The Herald   ****Guardian   ****The Scotsman

Wildman Room
Assembly@George Street
15:20 (16.50)
6-30 August (excluding Mon 17)

The Citizens Theatre, one of Scotland’s most iconic theatre companies, presents the first stage adaptation of Ron Butlin’s award-winning novel, The Sound Of My Voice.  Adapted and directed by Joint Artistic Director of the Citizens Theatre, Jeremy Raison, the production was first presented to great acclaim in May 2008.

“this fine piece of theatre is one of the most timely and significant shows Scotland has seen”  The Scotsman

“a sinewy, knife-edge performance”  The Herald

“stunning…a must see” Metro

Morris Magellan is an executive who runs a biscuit company in Scotland. With a house in the suburbs, a nice wife and kids, he is the epitomy of 1980s Thatcherite values.  Buckling under the pressure however, Morris is a chronic alcoholic and his life is falling apart.

Shying clear of the stereotype that alcoholism is a working class disease, Raison’s adaptation explores what it is to feel dissatisfied with suburbia and the daily grind. 

This tender portrayal of one man’s mid-life crisis, told in second person narrative, is performed as a two-hand show by Billy Mack and Michele Gallagher.

At one time Scotland’s best kept literary secret, Butlin’s novel was rescued from obscurity by Irvine Welsh, who nominated it as a lost classic in New York’s Village Voice, calling it “one of the greatest pieces of fiction to come out of Britain in the 80s.”

Since then other prominent writers, including Ian Rankin, have added their voices to this accolade, securing the novel’s position as a masterpiece.  Butlin’s other work includes three novels, as well as collections of poetry and short stories.  In 2008, Butlin was appointed Makar (poet laureate) for the City of Edinburgh.   

This production has been nominated in two categories at the 2009 Critics Awards for Theatre in Scotland: Best Actor (Male) for Billy Mack’s performance and Best Design for Jason Southgate and Graham Sutherland.

It is part of the Made In Scotland showcase supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, which is a partnership between the Fringe, the Federation of Scottish Theatre and the Scottish Arts Council.

The Citizens Theatre is delighted to be returning to the Edinburgh Festivals for the first time in over 10 years.  The company last appeared at the Edinburgh International Festival in 1998 when it presented The Robbers by Friedrich Schiller. 


For further information, press tickets, interview and picture requests, please contact:

Alison Martin – Marketing & Communication Manager, Citizens Theatre
0141 418 6235 /

Cat McNaught - Marketing & Communications Officer, Citizens Theatre
0141 418 6233 /


The Sound Of My Voice
From a novel by Ron Butlin
Adapted and Directed by Jeremy Raison
Design by Jason Southgate
Sound & Lighting Design by Graham Sutherland
Cast : Michele Gallagher & Billy Mack

Venue Details
Wildman Room
Assembly@George Street
54 George Street
0131 623 3030

Performance Details
15:20 (16.50)
6-30 August (excluding Monday 17 August – no performance)
Previews: 6 & 7 August

Ticket prices
Previews £5
Off-peak £11 (£9 conc) – 8-13; 18-20; 24-26 August
Peak £12 (£10 conc) – 14-16; 21-23; 27-30 August

Made In Scotland
Made in Scotland is a new initiative supported by the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund to showcase Scottish-based performing arts talent in the Edinburgh Festival Fringe through a partnership between the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the Federation of Scottish Theatre and the Scottish Arts Council. The programme has been especially selected by a distinguished panel of Scottish and international artists, programmers and cultural managers and commentators. At the heart of Made in Scotland is theatre and dance performance to excite, inspire and entertain with a mix of highly respected and established theatre and dance companies and some of Scotland’s most dynamic and innovative independent artists. Behind the scenes the initiative will help performers to raise their profile both at the Fringe and outside Scotland, with additional support to present their best work internationally and to foster international collaborations and creative dialogue. In addition, the Fringe and FST are developing a year round programme of training, support and advice to enable companies to prepare for participation in Made in Scotland, supporting them to achieve their goals for participation, including profile and touring opportunities.

Ron Butlin - Author
With an international reputation as a prize-winning novelist Ron Butlin is one of Scotland’s most acclaimed writers. Before taking up writing full-time he was, at various times, a lyricist with a pop band, a barnacle scraper on Thames barges, a footman, and a male model. In June 2008 he took up the post of Edinburgh Makar (Poet Laureate).  His works have won several SAC Book Awards and include three novels, as well as collections of poetry and short stories. The Sound of My Voice was the winner of the Prix MillePages 2004 and Prix Lucioles 2005, both for Best Foreign Novel.  He has been commissioned to write texts for the SCO, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Hebrides Ensemble and Edinburgh String Quartet among others. In 2008, The Perfect Woman, with composer Lyell Cresswell, was produced by Scottish Opera.  His most recent books include the novel Belonging, which was also a BBC Radio 4 Book at Bedtime, and a collection of short stories, No More Angels. He lives in Edinburgh with his wife, the writer Regi Claire, and their golden retriever.

Jeremy Raison – Director
Jeremy has been Artistic Director of the Citizens Theatre, Glasgow since November 2003.  He has directed his own adaptations of The Sound of My Voice, Therese Raquin, Baby Doll, A Handful of Dust, Blood Wedding and Wee Fairy Tales , classics including Desire Under The Elms, Don Juan and Ghosts as well as Scottish classics, The Bevellers and No Mean City, plus four Christmas shows, The Borrowers, Charlotte’s Web, James and The Giant Peach, and Peter Pan.  Prior to the Citizens Theatre, Jeremy’s extensive credits as both writer and director include work with Sir Dirk Bogarde, Ralph Fiennes, Zoe Wanamaker, Robert Carlyle, Jennifer Ehle, Alan Bates, Eileen Atkins, Shirley Henderson and many others.  He has directed more than thirty world premieres as well as classics for the Royal National Theatre, Channel 4, Chichester and many companies in the UK.  He has also worked in Denmark, Zimbabwe, Pakistan and Italy.  Other credits include his version of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in the West End, Dead Dad Dog which he commissioned and was subsequently televised, and Crush which he commissioned and was subsequently filmed. For his work as Artistic Director of Chester Gateway Theatre, he won the inaugural TMA/Stage Award for Outstanding Achievement in Regional Theatre.

Jason Southgate – Set Designer
Jason trained at Central St Martins and received an Arts Council Design Bursary in 2000.
Designs for theatre include: Ghosts, Wizard of Oz, Don Juan, The Sound of My Voice, Waiting for Godot, Peter Pan, Desire Under the Elms, Hamlet, The Bevellers, James and the Giant Peach and puppet design for Charlotte`s Web, Citizens Theatre Glasgow;The Lesson, Benchtours Edinburgh; Whistle Down the Wind, NYMT; On The Waterfront, Royal Haymarket London and Pleasance Theatre Edinburgh; The Lady from the Sea+Enemy of the People, Arcola Theatre; Elegies, Arts Theatre London; Dr Faustus, B.A.D.A at Oval House; Ten Days-Amaze, RADA.; Cabaret, Greenwich Theatre; The Deep Blue Sea, Nottingham Playhouse; Berkoff`s Women, Leicester Haymarket and Tour; Kafka`s The Trial, Riverside Studios.
Designs for opera include: Der Ring des Nibelungen, redesign of scenic elements Royal Opera House; Der Silbersee,Wexford Festival; Whirlwind, Streetwise Opera; Armide, Buxton Festival; Tannhauser, Stadtheatre Minden Germany; Carmen, Mid Wales Opera; Turn of the Screw, Landestheater Salzburg; La Cenerentola Frankfurt Opera+ Opera Zuid Maastricht; La Traviata, Athens Concert Hall; Lucia di Lammermoor, New Sussex Opera; Il Cappello di Paglia di Firenze, Trinity College of Music; Brundibar, Riverside Studios; La Boheme, Royal Sutton Opera.

Graham Sutherland – Sound & Lighting Designer
Graham trained at Glasgow University and currently works as Head of Lighting and Sound for the Citizens Theatre alongside his freelance work as a lighting and sound designer. Combined lighting & sound design credits for theatre include: The Sound of My Voice, Waiting For Godot, Hamlet, Tom Fool (Citizens Theatre); Snuff (The Arches/National Theatre of Scotland). Sound Design for radio - Life: An Audio Tour (Catherine Bailey Ltd for BBC Radio 4); for theatre - Sub Rosa (Sub Rosa/Fire Exit); Don Juan (Citizens Theatre); Slick (Vox Motus); Damascus & Petrol Jesus Nightmare #5 (Traverse Theatre); The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (Visible Fictions); White Death (Sweetscar), Frozen (Rapture Theatre); Slope, Blind_Sight (Untitled Projects); Freefall (7:84 Theatre Company); Stacy (Hush Productions). As a Lighting Designer, theatre credits include: Peter Pan (Visible Fictions); The Wizard of Oz (Citizens Theatre); Tamburlaine Must Die (Tron Theatre/Glasgay); Home-Dundee (National Theatre of Scotland); Romeo and Juliet, Blood Wedding (Citizens Theatre - associate); Arlecchino’s Revenge, Good Sister Bad, Fergus Steps Out, Distant Suma (Lung Ha’s Theatre Company); Voyager Princess (Sense Scotland); Dying For It, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, Our Town (Scottish Youth Theatre); Seeing Voices (Solar Bear); Our Town (Gilmorehill G12). Graham has also worked as a professional mentor in sound design for the University of Glasgow and as a project manager on various professional development projects with the National Theatre of Scotland.

Billy Mack – Actor
Billy’s theatre credits include The Sound of My Voice, Hamlet, The Bevellers, Peter Pan, Wee Fairy Tales, BFG,  No Mean City and Arturo Ui (Citizens Theatre), Book of Love, Short Spin and Wheesht (Oran Mor), The Winters Tale and Nightflights (Dundee Rep), and Aladdin (Courtyard Theatre Hereford).  Television credits include My Worst Day (C4), Still Game (Comedy Unit), Taggart (SMG), The Royal (Yorkshire Television) and The Ancient Greeks (BBC).

Michele Gallagher - Actress
Michele trained at the RSAMD. Theatre credits include The Oddest Couple (Oran Mor), Mother Goose (macrobert), Celts in Seville (Alyson Orr Productions), Hamlet, Chimneys, A Woman of No Importance (Pitlochry Festival Theatre), Balamory stage show (DC Entertainments), Cinderella’s Sisters (Catherine Wheels), Cut to the Chase (Complete Productions), Tam O’Shanter (The Arches) and Can’t Pay? Won’t Pay! (7:84).  TV and film credits include No Holds Bard (BBC), Still Game (Effingee), Leaves (Marquisde Films), Legit (The Comedy Unit), Taggart (SMG), Around Scotland (BBC), Monarch of the Glen (BBC) and Billy Bongo (Peel Street Films).  Radio includes Fags, Mags and Bags (The Comedy Unit) and Freedom (BBC Scotland).

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