A Machine They’re Secretly Building

Wednesday 7th June 2017
8:00 PM

Pay What You Can - Select Option


Norwich Arts Centre

Photo credit Proto-type and Adam York Gregory

Proto-type Theatre presents A Machine They’re Secretly Building



“I want you to know what’s happening…”



From what might be a news desk, an office, a bedroom, a bunker under a mountain or a theatre, two people – reporters, senators, freedom fighters, or just… well… concerned citizens like you – think about what it is to speak up, speak out, blow the whistle and lift the veil.

A Machine they’re Secretly Building charts a course from the Top Secret secrets of WWI intelligence (via the moon, 1972’s Chess World Championships, a disco in Oklahoma and the cafeteria at CERN) through to 9/11, the erosion of privacy, Edward Snowden and to the terror of a future that might already be upon us.

Proto-type have combined original text and classified intelligence documents with film from digital artist Adam York Gregory, and music and sound design by Paul J. Rogers, to vent their frustration at the insidious machine of surveillance.

A Machine they’re Secretly Building is about how we got to the point where our governments are spying on us and how that’s changing who we are.

“A sharing of disbelief, an articulate wail of anger” – Mark Smith, British Theatre Guide
“Think Adam Curtis meets Chris Thorpe meets Proto-type!” – Audience response
“Simple but striking… unflinching and important.” – Megan Vaughan
“a compact, harsh assault on our conscience, wrapped in an accessible, attention grabbing package” – Salter Ego

Audience Feedback

“Absolutely Fantastic – completely paranoid now and trying to figure out what I can do”
“Absolutely Amazing! So eye-opening – will be doing extra research. Coming back tomorrow night with a pad and pen. Thank you.”
“More & more terrifying, more and more sad, more and more strange. Fantastic”
“Loved the show on Thursday! I can’t get my head around the scale of some of it, a Yottabyte!? Also, love the Balaclavas.”
“I enjoyed this show more than you can know, thank you thank you.”

Duration 1 hour



Written and directed by Andrew Westerside
Devised and performed by Rachel Baynton and Gillian Lees
Digital design and artwork by Adam York Gregory
Original sound design and music by Paul J. Rogers
Stage Manager Thomas Marcinek
Producer Gillian Lees | Consultant Producer Matt Burman



Proto-type website
Proto-type facebook
Proto-type twitter

A Machine they’re Secretly Building was commissioned by Lincoln Performing Arts Centre (Lincoln), Warwick Arts Centre (Warwick) and hÅb (Manchester). Supported by Tramway, Glasgow, Lancaster Arts at Lancaster University, the Britten-Pears Foundation and the National Lottery through Arts Council England.


Book Online

Select a date and time from the drop down menu and click the 'Book Now' button.
Admin fees are charged on all payment types, cash, card and online. This is to cover essential admin costs associated with running our Box Office.
Arts Council England Norwich City CouncilNorfolk County Council prsf-tdp_mono1-web

Norwich Sound and Vision Sonic Youths True Stories Live Lost in Translation Circus Live Art UK twitter facebook
Tickets | Mailing List | Twitter | Hirings | Calendar | Gallery |
Tech & Agents

(01603) 660352 Norwich Arts Centre, St. Benedict's Street, Norwich, NR2 4PG. Charity No: 274803