The first man in space is back on Earth and facing new temptations. Fame, fortune, alcohol, nostalgic space anthems and sex. Can this cosmic captain control his space junk?

In our modern world – of Instagram influencers and YouTube vloggers, instant fame is closer to all of us than ever before. All it takes is a few clicks and people all over the world know your name, your message, your story. Our new show Space Junk: A Soviet Musical will be taking a look back at one of the first cases of instant fame, all the way back in the 1960s, and using our modern lens to understand the effects it can have on a person’s mentality, lifestyle and sanity.

Yuri Gagarin was possibly the word’s first sudden celebrity – and it’s about time to tell his story of champagne soirées, sexy nurses, becoming besties with Fidel Castro and tumbling down the star-studded stairs of the dark side of fame.

He was the first man in space, originally from a small Russian peasant family. After training to become a pilot, he was selected to become the new face of the Soviet Union and travel among the stars. Coming back down to Earth however, he struggled with his newfound fame. Space Junk: A Soviet Musical takes a look at his journey from the moment he lands to travelling across the world, the relationship with his family, his eventual disillusion with his country and his mysterious death.

Against a backdrop of classic Bowie space anthems and an all new original interstellar backing track, Space Junk: A Soviet Musical brings to light how anyone – even an engineer from Smolensk Oblast – can bring themselves to the precipice of fame-fuelled self-destruction.

Featuring live performances of songs by David Bowie, Elton John, Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole and more as well as an original score by composer Madeline Ashman.

Yuri Gagarin – Mike Dorey
Alexey Leonov – Oscar Ginn
Valentina Gagarina – Liv Richardson-Frisby
Elena Gagarina – Ali Cornforth

Eric ‘Winkle’ Brown/Vladimir Komarov – Jack Etheridge
Nurse Anna/Valentina Tereshkova – Aditi Mohan
Vodka Bottle Man – Harry Smith
Fidel Castro/Leonid Brezhnev – Jake Mace

Live Band –
Madeline Ashman
Ed Cross
Harry Smith
Tom Tollyfield

Writer & Director – Jake
Composer & Musical Director – Madeline Ashman
Technical Director – Arthur Fleetham

Cast Gallery

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#SPACEJUNK will land at EdFringe 2019 from the 2nd-17th August (day off 11th) at 21:10 daily at TheSpace @ Surgeons Hall – Theatre 2. Teaser Trailer landing early July.