After a sell-out five star run at the Edinburgh Festival Les Enfants Terribles tour the UK with their new award-winning show, The Trench. From the team behind The Terrible Infants, Ernest and the Pale Moon and The Vaudevillains, comes a new play inspired by the true story of a miner who became entombed in a tunnel during World War One. As the horror threatens to engulf him, he finds that not everything in the darkness is what it seems as he starts to discover a new, strange world beneath the mud and death. Setting off on an epic journey of salvation, the boundaries between reality and fantasy blur as he questions what’s real, what’s not and whether it even matters? Blending live music, puppetry and physical performance, The Trench is the critically acclaimed new show “from razor sharp theatre company,” Les Enfants Terribles (The Telegraph).

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Reviews

THE STAGE (Must See Show)
A total theatre experience of engrossing intensity, The Trench employs acting, mime, music, puppetry, film and even flying to enrich history with the quality of myth and reinvest an old story with the power it has lost through overfamiliarity

THE LIST
a pitch-perfect demonstration of atmospheric theatre.
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FEST
It’s theatre which cuts deep and doesn’t heal until long after the curtain has gone down. At its solid heart, this is a sound piece of writing…
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THE SUNDAY EXPRESS
The most impressively-staged fringe show I’ve seen this year, rendered with spellbinding intensity.
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WHATS ON STAGE
The language is poetic, rather than demotic, but the symbolism is handled superbly and with the utmost sincerity.
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BURY PRESS
portrayed in an entirely original way that is utterly captivating.

THEATRE MAGAZINE
It is a kind of theatre that many attempt but only few succeed in using effectively.

THE TIMES
this darkly beautiful myth of the First World War echoes the look of a Topolski drawing: scarred and blackened and jagged and cramped, with the odd gleam of lanterns… the overall vision stays with you like a strange, significant dream.
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BRITISH THEATRE GUIDE
Undoubtedly, this is the most moving and visually stunning performance I have seen on the Fringe so far. This incredible production was skilfully performed with strong images, imposing puppetry and powerful projected shadow film
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EDINBURGH SPOTLIGHT
The Great War has been used as a metaphor for futility and sacrifice many times, but seldom with as powerful and mythic a poignancy. Beautifully staged, The Trench blends physical theatre, puppetry and mime together with Lansley’s atmospheric rhyming script
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THE SUNDAY TIMES
Les Enfants Terribles use puppetry and live music to delve into the experience of panic-soaked life in the trenches of the first World War… you’ll be harrowed.
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THE YOKER
The Trench is what would happen if you combined Birdsong with the poetry of Wilfred Owen and Siefried Sassoon, added some puppetry and set the whole thing to a live folk-pop soundtrack. It takes you on a fantastical journey that realises the horrors of war in a new and creative way, never before seen in a war play.

FRINGE GURU
It’s a physical and bleakly visual production, filled with khaki greens and muddy greys, and imbued with a sense of inescapable dread that’s rarely achieved

FRINGE REVIEW
This is a performance of exquisite tragedy and beauty with music, puppetry, projections and acting of the highest standard. Entrancing, lyrical and enthralling
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THE PUBLIC REVIEWS
A stunning performance which has amazing impact. Highly recommended. The addition of Wolfe’s live music was a touch of genius as it adds a personal touch that many other storytelling companies of a similar ilk lack, setting Les Enfants Terribles apart as leaders in their field
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THE LATEST
Les Enfants Terribles march into town with their breathtaking production The Trench and knock spots off so many festival offerings. This extraordinary show is so beautifully realised that it’s hard to know where to start
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FRINGE BISCUIT
Phenomenally poetic, visually outstanding, musically invigorating. A continual reinvention of form.
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EDINBURGH EVENING NEWS
This production uses theatre to its full potential. It’s impossible to imagine any other art form achieving the same.
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THE CARDIFFIAN
Emotionally affecting; watching the performance felt like being transported into a Wilfred Owen poem as the horrors of the trenches truly came to life on stage

OXFORD TIMES
A powerful and profound piece of theatre which impacts on many levels; you will be moved and amazed. It epitomises what makes theatre unique.
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BROADWAY BABY
Music is only one of a number of mediums that fuse seamlessly in the course of The Trench, a spectacularly moving and multifaceted production that marks another triumph
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TV BOMB
This multi-dimensional piece of theatre employs puppetry, poetic language, physical theatre, and haunting live music to spectacular and inventive effect.
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ONE4REVIEW
As always the blending of puppetry, shadow puppets, delightful music which is totally atmospheric and such a mesmerising, versatile set that’s wonderfully lit, together with tight direction really make this a production to be savoured.
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THE UPCOMING
excellent story telling
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FRINGE GURU
A truly an engrossing and horrifying watch, which delves deep into the psychological cost paid by so many on the Western Front – and will leave you shaken to your core long after the lights dim… The Trench truly excels. A Masterpiece.
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SGFRINGE
The beautiful live musical accompaniment, the third person Greig-esque poetic narration, the physical theatre aspects, the inventive use of props and the wonderful puppetry, all combine to make a unique and compelling world like no other
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HAIRLINE
Beautiful, horrific and an experience like no other, Les Enfants Terribles have done it once again: they raised the stakes and delivered.
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EDINBURGH GUIDE
a very powerful and beautifully realized piece, packed with imagination and heart
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THE WHARF
The physicality is both beautiful and challenging as benches and boards are reinvented as mine shafts and tunnels. However, the piece truly comes into its own with the appearance of the nightmarish puppet that is summoned from the bowels of the earth.
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ONE STOP ARTS
the visuals are never less than striking, frequently stunning
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THE GOOD REVIEW
Les Enfants Terribles have created a fantastic piece of theatre here, one that’s unforgettable and moving.
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ART WEDNESDAY
Their ability to invest such seemingly simple set pieces with persuasive creativity and imagination is one of Les Enfants’ real strengths

SO SO GAY
Thrillingly clever, emotive and deliciously creative, the story draws you in so much that you have no choice but to be utterly beguiled by it all.
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BROADWAY WORLD
simply a delight to watch.
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NO BORDERS MAGAZINE
Throughout the play the set and staging is manipulated superbly and effortlessly
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Cast

Cast 2014:

Ben Warwick
Ed Cartwright
John Cockerill
Kieran Kuypers
Alexander Wolfe

Cast 2013:

Ben Warwick
Ed Cartwright
Alexander Scott
Elliott Rennie
Alexander Wolfe

Cast 2012:

Oliver Lansley
Conrad Sharp
Alfie Boyd
Tim Jackson
Alexander Wolfe

Written Oliver Lansley
Directed James Seager & Oliver Lansley
Designed Sam Wyer
Lighting Design Paul Green
All music written and played live Alexander Wolfe

Silhouette animation Richard Mansfield – www.muckypuppets.co.uk
Production Manager / Sound Liam McDermott
Lighting Operator Theo Chadhra / Peter Fennell & Abi Toghill
Assistant Director Jess Edwards 2012
Assistant Puppet makers Matt Hutchinson, and Maya Seidler
Costume Designer Hannah Spearing
Set reconstruction Illusion Design Construct
Lighting Operator in 2012 Matt Smith

String quartet intro to The Landing written by Alex Metcalfe & Alexander Wolfe, played by The Wolfettes: Rachel Dawson (cello), Polly Wiltshire (viola), Catriona Parker (violin), Sarah Tuke (violin)

The Trench was produced and created by Les EnfantsTerribles Theatre Company in association with Wales Millennium Centre and Luton Hat Factory.

Special Thanks to: Malcolm & Gillian Lansley, Vicky Sanders, Malcolm & Jean Sanders, Luton Hat Factory, Wales Millennium Centre, The Pleasance, South Nutfield Scout hut, Sally Higginson, Tom Attwood, Elise Colledge, Harriet Darling, Megan Harrison, Lara Booth, Isabella Van Braeckel, Georgi Shire, The Gate Theatre, Jude Christian, Natalie Richardson, Alex McCarthy, Rhian Solomon-Ayeh, Doreen Braund, Anna Marsland, Rachel Introna, Louise Miles Crust, Odunsi Oluwatoyin

For venues looking to book this act contact us here