Siamese Twins

Siamese Twins

By Griselda Gambaro
translated by Gwen Mackeith

'I would like to, I would like to...cut the cord.'

In this absurd and forceful play, two brothers carry out a primal scene of envy, cruelty and torture. Ignacio wants to break free of his brother and move out of their shared house, but Lorenzo has other plans.

Through a series of dark comedic scenes the absurd becomes a harrowing metaphor of the most pure and raw reality.


First performed in 1967, this is an early, yet startling brilliant, work by the internationally acclaimed Argentine playwright, Griselda Gambaro. The UK premiere of Siamese Twins is a collaborative project between the Silver Lining Theatre company and Artes Escénicas Rayuela, A.C. and has been generously supported by the Out of the Wings project at King’s College London, Queen’s University Belfast and Oxford University.


There will be post-show discussion on 20 September. Free admission with a ticket from the performance.

Creative Team: Jorge Perez Falconi and Mara Lockowandt (directors), Karen Quigley (lightening design), Sylwia Dobkowska (set and costume design), Kostas Panagiotou (composer), James Illman (graphic design).


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Press Night: 7 September, doors open at 6:30pm

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Image © James Illman



'Griselda Gambaro is, without doubt, one of the most innovative and powerful writers in the world today.' - Diana Taylor (Professor of Drama, New York University)


Siamese Twins

Published Friday 9 September 2011 at 11:33 by Jonathan Lovett

Griselda Gambaro’s 1967 absurdist drama foreshadowed Argentina’s so-called ‘Dirty War’ when thousands of predominantly left-wingers lost their lives or disappeared.

Brilliantly capturing a period of mistrust and state-sponsored violence, she turned to the story of Cain and Abel, depicting one brother destroying another while adding some deeply unsavoury characters on the side of the police.

The result owes a debt to Harold Pinter, particularly plays like The Birthday Party and The Dumb Waiter, and was an eerie premonition of the genocide to come.

Receiving a worthy tribute, in its long overdue UK premiere, this atmospheric production succeeds in weaving comedy into menace, and vice versa, helped by Kostas Panagiotou’s evocative score.

In a hilarious, unnerving opening, Lorenzo (Rob Witcomb) embarks on a frantic ten-minute monologue, attempting to justify why exactly he can’t open the door to his twin who is being beaten up on the other side.

Into a room virtually made of newspapers (here the truth is as questionable as a dictator’s daily) comes the bruised sibling, Ignacio (Fred Gray) and so begins a tale of quiet terror punctuated by moments of bizarre humour from the exuberant Witcomb and a fantastically odd double-act of Emile Clarke and Jay Worthy as two policemen referred to in the programme as ‘Nasal Man’ and ‘Smiley Man’.

Fascinating to hear and watch, Clarke’s high-pitched squeal and lolloping limbs seem to be inspired by a dying baby dinosaur.

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