Grounded (4 stars)

This article is from 2013


Compelling monologue charting female pilot's transition from work to domestic life

Snared in a murky glass cage in the middle of the room, a pilot, mother, wife soars through a compelling monologue of how she ended up in her grey, concrete trap. The Pilot - fierce, ambitious and in love with the sky - becomes pregnant, married and grounded. As her life slips through her fingers, she struggles to cope with her transition from the Blue – her job flying fighter jets – to the Grey – motherhood and drone pilot stuck on terra firma. Her path to near madness is paved with disturbing bursts of dubstep, static and the ever-present grey providing a manic backdrop as the repetition of her new life begins to erode her sanity and fuel delusions of grandeur and power trips against those she perceives as The Guilty.

Themes of excessive surveillance and modern warfare are on topic enough that, by the end, the audience are less detached from reality than the pilot, and Grounded delivers a punch to the gut as in the play’s dying moments, our role of pub confidant is turned, guiltily, on its head.

Traverse Theatre, 228 1404, until 25 Aug (not 12, 19), times vary, £17–£19 (£6–£14).


  • 4 stars
  • Directed by: Christopher Haydon
  • Written by: George Brant

The harrowing tale of an ex-fighter pilot, now mother, who finds her new, more grounded, career a strain.