Plain as Paper

Plain as Paper is an energetic physical theatre show centred around where our imaginations can take us using only paper—though what is going on there and why is not always plain.

The possibilities of the imagination may have been used to create the show, but for those watching it’s more like trying to understand someone else’s dream

Trying to tell many stories through their actions and paper props, we are left with no consistent stories or characters to follow. The young cast act out various scenes set—as a handy sign points out—from Germany to China, New York, and London, with music and lights providing the timing and mood. There’s no talking, just nonsense words reminiscent of the Minions from Despicable Me. Schoolboys with paper aeroplanes morph into WW1 soldiers, dancehalls turn into Chinese processions, and New York workers walk around with eyes fixed on their paper, and while these transfigurations may be interesting in themselves all this character- and scene-shifting leaves you somewhat at sea.

While some parts are undeniably amusing—as when they break out into bobbleheaded typewriter characters from New York—others are very hard to follow, and the piece as a whole lacks a proper narrative. The possibilities of the imagination may have been used to create the show, but for those watching it’s more like trying to understand someone else’s dream or a particularly insistent three year old—wacky, but not that intelligible or important to you. We’re not able to get a handle on any of the characters since they are constantly changing, so even when they’re acting out tragedy, love, or other scenes that are supposed to evoke our compassion, it’s hard to summon up the right emotion.

This is an amateur performance that has some potential, but won’t blow anyone away. Instead, we are left wondering how much paper must be used in this production every day. 

Reviews by Fiona Mossman

Gilded Balloon at the Museum

The Snow Queen

Assembly George Square Studios

Sarah Kendall: Shaken

Underbelly, Cowgate

The Hours Before We Wake

Gilded Balloon Teviot

Wendy Wason: Tiny Me

theSpace @ Surgeons Hall

The Female Question

Paradise in Augustines

Lest We Forget


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Paper has always been present throughout our lifetime. It’s the tool to preserve our history, and the instrument to document our future. Journey through the years gone by, where we will make paper and physical theatre combine. Join GLJ Theatre as they recall key moments in our world’s history, from the Queen’s coronation, to the devastating days of war that attacked our nations, all through the use of paper. Yes, our whole show is told through paper – folding, cutting and scrunching – it’s amazing how you can tell a good story. That’s it, Plain as Paper...

Most Popular See More


From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Moulin Rouge! The Musical

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Frozen the Musical

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets