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Last Days of Mankind, The

Leith Theatre

One hundred years after the Armistice, Leith Theatre presents a contemporary satirical account of World War One, written in the cafes of Vienna by Karl Kraus. Read more …

With original songs from The Tiger Lillies and a cast drawn from Scotland, Ireland, Poland, Germany, France, Ukraine and Serbia this is true European theatre.

The first docudrama, Kraus uses contemporary accounts, newspaper reports and political speeches to create a picture of World War One as it happened.

More information on this production is available at

The critical consensus

The Last Days Of Mankind offers something that remains all too rare in our remembrance rituals.

****(*)Joyce McMillan, The Scotsman, 12/11/2018

Despite its flagrant flaws, this is a production that deserves to be seen.

****(*)Hugh Simpson, All Edinburgh Theatre, 12/11/2018

With the band onstage throughout, their newly composed set of narrative vignettes sung by Jacques add an even darker layer of malevolence to a show that may be as overwhelmingly fractured as the war that sired it, but leaves its audience quietly shell-shocked by such a mighty theatrical feat.

****(*)Neil Cooper, Coffee-Table Notes, 13/11/2018

In our own times of uncertainty, this important vehemently anti -war production, that has chants from the past that echo with a chill note today, is a vital affirmation of co-operative European Theatre.

****(*)Irene Brown, Edinburgh Guide, 12/11/2018

Kraus’ epic is performed as a fluid work with a sense of urgency.

****(*)Libby Chalmers, Review Sphere, 14/11/2018

Exquisite in its execution, this production is a centennial event like no other.

****(*)Dominic Corr, The Wee Review, 12/11/2018

The unedited version of the play runs to some 15 hours, but even this nearly four hour-long production, based on Patrick Healy’s punchy translation, starts to repeat itself.

***(*)(*)Allan Radcliffe, 14/11/2018

The production, like the play, is a work of flawed brilliance.

Mark Brown, Scottish Stage, 19/11/2018

Features about Last Days of Mankind, The

Anti-war play to bring vital piece of theatre and act of remembrance of Leith

Joyce McMillan, The Scotsman, 27/10/2018

The Last Days of Mankind mixes docudrama with vaudeville.

Gareth K Vile, The List, 06/11/2018

John Paul McGroarty and Martyn Jacques--The Last Days of Mankind

Neil Cooper, Coffee-Table Notes, 08/11/2018

Where and when?

Leith Theatre, Leith from Saturday November 10, 2018, until Friday November 16, 2018. More info:

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