"If you had unprecedented access to classified networks 14 hours a day, 7 days a week for 8+ months, what would you do?"

Chelsea Manning is currently serving 35 years in jail for leaking classified documents to WikiLeaks in 2010. Then known as Pfc Bradley Manning, this 26 year old super-intelligent, socially-awkward soldier’s actions saw her become the centrepiece in a war between whistleblowers and the US Government.

In the era of Wikileaks and Edward Snowden, how will history remember Manning?

Through the eyes of an everyday individual Desert explores this hugely significant figure, blending real-life transcripts with imagined events. Responding to an ongoing political story as it unfolds, the MolinoGroup’s "excellent new play" (Exeunt) captures the force of a compelling, contemporary narrative.

The Spring 2014 tour of Desert is supported by Arts Council England, Unity Theatre Trust and New Diorama Emerging Companies Fund. These performances are supported by IdeasTap.


The MolinoGroup is a theatre and performance collective established in 2011 by Bethany Pitts (Director) and Edward Fortes (Dramaturg). Previous work includes Esther, Flor, Ilona (Scooter Café, Waterloo) and Smoke / Mirrors (V&A Playhouse Festival).

Working with an acting ensemble in a collaborative way, The MolinoGroup develops new writing from a different angle, developing text through workshops alongside a more physical approach and with a writer in the room. In doing so, they aim to bridge the gap between new writing and devising practices.


"astonishingly good"
★★★★ Exeunt Magazine