Henry Naylor's play Borders is a two-hander about idealism, personal and professional ethics, how the West interacts with the East, the conflict in Syria, and the migrant crisis. It was first produced as part of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe at the Gilded Balloon Theatre, Edinburgh, as a Redbeard Theatre/Gilded Balloon production on 2 August 2017.
The play interweaves the converging stories (told mostly in monologue) of two characters: Sebastian Nightingale, a celebrated war photographer, whose audience with Osama bin Laden prior to 9/11 shaped his career; and a nameless young Syrian graffiti artist whose urge to rebel lands her in serious trouble as the Assad regime embarks on a civil war, and, six months pregnant, she finds herself on an ageing fishing boat in the Mediterranean, sinking fast under the weight of refugees.
The Redbeard Theatre/Gilded Balloon production was directed by Michael Cabot and performed by Graham O’Mara and Avital Lvova. It won the Carol Tambor Best of Edinburgh Fringe Award and a Fringe First.
The script was rewritten for the Australian premiere at the Holden Street Theatre, Adelaide, on 12 February 2018, with the same cast directed by Louise Skaaning.
Borders was then performed at the Spoleto Festival in Charleston in May 2018 and at The Theatre Next Door at New York Theatre Workshop in June–July 2018, with the same cast, directed by Michael Cabot with Louise Skaaning.