The Earthworks

On the eve of the activation of the Large Hadron Collider, two strangers - a journalist and a scientist - share their experiences of loss and hope in a funny but deeply touching one-act play.

First performed at The Other Place, Stratford-upon-Avon, as part of the Mischief Festival, 24th May to June 17th 2017. Royal Shakespeare Company, dir: Erica Whyman.

Lena Kaur as Clare and Thomas Magnusson as Fritjof / photo by Topher McGrillis

Morton-Smith is best known for the epic Oppenheimer, but this small, often funny play focusing on two fragile people rubbing up against each other at a moment of change has its own quiet heroism. What appears to be a romantic comedy turns into something more unsettling ... raising questions about the limits of knowledge and our capacity to face up to the future. Oh, and who wouldn’t love a play that uses a custard fight to explain mass?
— Lyn Gardner, Guardian
This is small-scale and delicate ... a late-night encounter between a journalist and a scientist in a Geneva hotel on the eve of the activation of the Large Hadron Collider. All the grandest ideas in the world are about [to] come into play there, but Morton-Smith reminds us that it’s the most intimate human connections that have the greatest impact. ★★★★
— Fiona Mountford, Evening Standard