Closed Lands by Simon Grangeat


The English premiere of Closed Lands (Terres Closes), by French award-winning playwright Simon Grangeat, performed by an all-female international cast as part of VAULT Festival. Why is the ‘free world’ obsessed with walls?

A unique fusion of poetry, satire, reportage, and traveller’s diary, Closed Lands traces the history of modern walls – real and metaphorical – from Berlin to Mexico to Europe. Beginning in 1989 with the euphoria for the fall of the Berlin wall – “the end of shame”, as it was described – it moves in space and time to Mexico, the Sahara Desert, and the wall of water surrounding “Fortress Europe”.

Based on factual research and performed by actors who are all migrants in the UK, Closed Lands chronicles the “Free world’s” obsession with border walls and our journey back to shame.

In association with Exchange Theatre, LegalAliens’ powerful and evocative multimedia production features five women rotating through the roles of migrant, politician, citizen, CEO and a VIP bot, all part of a perverse and random mechanism. As our lives become increasingly part of a gigantic video game, even the most dramatic situations – boats crossing the Med, border controls- can be sold to the public as glamorous products.

Simon Grangeat is a French playwright. His writing weaves documentary, real testimonies and fiction into original dramaturgies that have been welcomed with warm reception all across Europe.


From left to right:  Becka McFadden (US, UK), Lara Parmiani (IT, UK),
Daiva Dominyka (Lithuania), 
Catharina Conte (Brazil), Luiana Bonfim (Angola/Portugal)

Directed by: Becka McFadden 
Assistant Director: Jonathan Millington
Translation: Laure Fernandez and LegalAliens
Light and projection design: Julien Bernard-Grau

3rd – 8th March 2020

The Vaults,
Leake Street,

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