Bottleneck - Soho Theatre

Soho Theatre, London

Tuesday, February 19, 2013 - Saturday, March 9, 2013

A World Premiere. Written by Luke Barnes

A HighTide Festival Theatre Production

For details of the tour after Soho Theatre click here

Am I a virgin? I think I am. I mean it went in her but it was floppy and it wasn’t very nice so I think I am a virgin. I’m going to say I am. Will look better on me uni applications.
Tickets: £10/£15.

’An outstanding play by young writer Luke Barnes.’ **** Telegraph

’Luke Barnes captures the voice of Britain’s youth with wit and compassion. He emerges from this year’s Fringe as a red-hot writing talent to watch.' **** Independent

Photo: Bill Knight



Liverpool, 1989. Greg is fourteen. He has just started secondary school. He earns pocket money sweeping up hair in a barbers. Girls are aliens. Liverpool FC are everything. 

Liverpool, 2012. Greg has an extraordinary story to tell you. 
Bottleneck is a vibrant coming-of-age story about becoming a man through adventures both big and small. It is about a notorious city; Liverpool. How the outside world views it, and how it views the outside world.
Luke Barnes is a northern-born emerging playwright; both a unique and exciting wordsmith. His first play Chapel Street was selected as one of the top 5 new plays off the West End in 2011 by The Stage and he was shortlisted for an OffWestEnd award for most promising playwright.
Steven Atkinson's acclaimed production from the 2012 Edinburgh Festival transfers to Soho Theatre followed by a UK tour.
Running time 60 minutes approx. No interval.
Join in the conversation @ Twitter #bottleneck
Suitable for ages 12+
Production Supporters
Clare Parsons and Tony Langham
Criona Palmer and Tony Mackintosh
The Royal Victoria Hall Foundation
Foyle Foundation
Shoreditch Town Hall


Written by Luke Barnes

Directed by Steven Atkinson

Movement Directed by Georgina Lamb

Lighting by Natasha Chivers

Sound and Music by Tom Mills

Assistant Directed by George Chilcott


Seldom does theatre possess the raw emotional power to reduce an entire room of strangers to stunned silence but HighTide Festival Theatre's magnificent staging achieves that feat with aplomb and sensitivity. Metro, FOUR STARS.

Luke Barnes, 24, captures the voice of Britain’s youth with wit and compassion. He emerges from this year’s Fringe as a red-hot writing talent to watch. The Independent, FOUR STARS.

Bottleneck is an outstanding play by young writer Luke Barnes. The Telegraph, FOUR STARS.

Bottleneck feels urgent, fresh, full of rageExuent, FOUR STARS.
There's been quite a buzz about Luke Barnes' play, and one can understand why. Whatsonstage, FOUR STARS.
Performed with poise and seemingly endless energy by James Cooney. The Scotsman, FOUR STARS.
Totally brought to life by Barnes’ vividly expressionistic writing. The List, FOUR STARS. 
Barnes is one of the best new writers at the Fringe, and James Cooney is exceptional as Greg. Three Weeks, FIVE STARS.
James Cooney gives a great performanceTime Out


Book Now

Tickets can be booked through the Soho Theatre website here.