The Slab Boys trilogy is a coming-of-age story that is recognised around the world and a modern piece of Scottish theatre history.Cuttin' A Rug might be set in Paisley Town Hall on a particular evening in 1957, but it's not only a play 'about' working class Scotland in the mid-20th-century.
|Cuttin' A Rug casts in 1987 and 2017|
|Ryan Fletcher as Phil and Mark Barrett and Terry in rehearsals for Cuttin' A Rug.|
Teenage rebellion, the decline of industry and the impact that has on communities' and individuals' identities, the pervasiveness of American culture, and the importance and fragility of dreams and goals are all touched on in the trilogy. Sound familiar?
The 1978 premiere was directed by David Hayman and starred Billy McColl and Jim Byars as Phil and Spanky, with Robbie Coltrane as 'Plooky' Jack Hogg. Also in the cast were Ida Schuster as Sadie the tea lady, always on hand with a Cream Cookie and Elaine Collins, wife of Peter Capaldi and now ITV drama producer.
|Original The Slab Boys production. Courtesy of The Traverse Theater|
Like many a west coast émigré The play even made it across the pond to New York, where Kevin Bacon, Sean Penn and Val Kilmer practised their best Paisley accents in 1983.
|Production shot from the 1983 Broadway production of The Slab Boys starring Sean Penn, Kevin Bacon and Val Kilmer.|
When The Slab Boys director David Hayman later worked with Kevin Bacon on the movie Where the Truth Lies, Bacon told him that The Slab Boys was one of the highlights of his career.
Meanwhile, back in Scotland, the play was revived at the Traverse during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 1982. As well as returning to direct the play, David Hayman joined the cast as Phil with the late Gerard Kelly playing Spanky.
In 2015, David Hayman returned to The Slab Boys to direct a new production at the Citizens Theatre designed by John Byrne, marking the first time that he and John Byrne had worked together since the play was first presented. Hayman also returning to the Citizens stage that he's so familiar with, though he'd graduated from the slab room to the position of the gaffer Willie Currie.
|David Hayman as Willie Curry and Jamie Quinn as Spanky. Credit Tim Morozzo|
|Caroline Paterson and Alan Cumming in The Slab Boys at Dundee Rep|
|Director Caroline Paterson takes a break from rehearsals. Credit Alex Brady.|
Not only is Cuttin' A Rug an important piece of Scottish theatrical history, it's also a great night out. Designer Kenny Miller will be re-creating a retro 50's night out with circle skirts, sharp suits and plenty of chicken grease to keep those DA hairdo's sleek.
Pick up a bargain £9.50 preview ticket, one of our £12.50 Tuesday tickets, or get yourself along to our 50p Ticket Sale on Saturday 4 February and come and Cut A Rug!
CITIZENS THEATRE 8 FEB - 4 MAR
KING'S THEATRE EDINBURGH 7 - 11 MAR