When whistle-blowing American soldier Bradley Manning was found guilty of espionage at the end of last month, to many it seemed a contradiction of old ideals of truth, justice and the American way.

It also made The Radicalisation Of Bradley Manning, Tim Price's dramatic rendering of Manning's story for National Theatre Wales, look the most pertinent play on the planet.

When NTW first presented John E McGrath's production, it was in the Welsh school that Manning attended. For their Fringe run they do something similar, with noises off and camouflage-clad figures occupying classrooms as the audience enter.

Once seated on four sides of the school's echoey assembly area, the audience witnesses Manning's course from a displaced childhood in small-town Wales to a bullied gay computer geek came to develop a disrespect for authority that would eventually bring about his downfall.

Price does this by flitting between time zones, from the little classroom protests that shaped Manning, to the Stateside McJobs he seemed destined for, to his father refusing to pay him through college, and to Baghdad, where the grunts watched murders of civilians on their laptops as if they were video games.

By having all six performers play Manning at various points, passing his glasses between them like a weapon, it suggests a common cause in which anyone could have done what he did.

All of this is energetically realised in a production that might well be NTW's Black Watch moment. Indeed, one can't help but note the odd stylistic nod to the National Theatre of Scotland's most popular show to date. McGrath and his team take things in other directions, however, and when, with seemingly nothing to lose, Manning does leak the thousands of documents, his action becomes as liberating and euphoric as a night surrounded by drag queens on the dance floor of a gay disco.

When Joseph Conrad published his novel, The Secret Agent, in 1907, his tale of a reluctant agent provocateur who becomes embroiled in an anarchist plot to blow up Greenwich Observatory was an early example of the political thriller. In the post 9/11 age, it looks like an examination of the long-term effects of random acts of terrorism.

In Theatre O's hands, Conrad's story becomes something else again, as the company reject straight literary adaptation in favour of a melting pot of post-modern vaudeville.

Opening with the company inviting the audience to take a peek into their Cabinet of Desire, things eventually open out to the main story, in which Verloc becomes an agent for mysterious 'foreign powers.' At home with his wife and family all seems normal, but when things go horribly wrong, Verloc's life literally blows up in his face.

Joseph Alford's production, devised with his cast of five and scripted by Matthew Hurt, fuses Victorian music hall, silent movie melodrama and magic lantern moodiness to make for something that initially appears charming but slight.

As it slow-burns its way to an ending in which the waste of human life for a higher cause is brought tragically home, The Secret Agent becomes a darkly imagined catalogue of madness and despair.

Before Eddie Argos became lead singer with smarty-pants alt-pop combo, Art Brut, and before Amy Mason became a writer and performer, they went out with each other as teenagers, living it up in a grotty bed-sit straight out of a kitchen-sink novel. At some point in 1999, they ran away for a cheap holiday in a B&B on the Isle Of Wight, before breaking up and going on to live very different lives.

Nearly 15 years on, Mason and Argos have returned to the scene of the crime by way of a quite lovely lo-fi rite of passage musical, The Islanders, which moves between Mason's angsty adolescence and Argos' utter fecklessness in a dead-end town where mix-tapes, Top Of The Pops and indie discos are the only salvation.

Moving between Mason's spoken-word monologues and Argos' equally naked songs counterpointing her version of events with his, this is as raw as it gets as well charmingly poignant and funny. Where Mason is deadpan in her delivery, Argos, accompanied by Jim Moray on guitar, is expansive and needy.

All until August 25