“HOW old are you?” a voice asks. “I’m 19 but I feel 90,” says Adam. Played by Adam Kashmiry, the real person upon whom France Poet’s remarkable play is based, Adam appears to be hallucinating. Wrecked with fever in his cramped Glasgow flat, the 700 days during which he “ripped myself into manhood” were an agony of confusion, reflection and DIY realignment therapy – an attempt to turn his female body into the male one he knew he belonged in even as an infant made to wear frilly dresses. That attempt included internet-bought testosterone injections, and the prospect of far worse. Watching the people take to the streets of Cairo during the Arab Spring, and desperately unhappy with his body, he says: “Nothing changes without blood.”

Presented by the National Theatre of Scotland, and part of the Made In Scotland showcase, Adam is Kashmiry’s journey from his Egyptian birthplace to find a home, a place where he can be himself. That he eventually found it on the stage of Glasgow’s Tron theatre in Here We Stay, a project held as part of 2013’s Scottish Refugee Week, is testament to the welcoming, outward-looking country many profess to want Scotland to be, but it was not without navigating a labyrinth of Home Office bureaucracy and disbelief. With no recognition of trans people in Egypt, Adam did not exist, neither did the crimes against him.

Playful rather than preachy, Adam is both a success in terms of experimental theatrical form and affective, non-manipulative storytelling – this performance roused an enthusiastic ovation. The decision to cast two actors as Adam is particularly winning, with Neshla Caplan often voicing the parts of Adam’s identity associated with his female bodily past or the social conservatism of Egypt, as well as key characters such as Amira, the young girl with whom he strikes up a bond while working in a dress shop.

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Poet’s script is true to her name, rhythmic and dynamic, and the team directed by Cora Bisset give Adam an elegant physicality and sense of aliveness characteristic of her recent Room and Glasgow Girls. That vitality is partly due to Adam being a production in evolution, with its featured Adam World Choir still seeking trans and non-binary singers of all experiences.

Until Aug 27 (not 14, 21), Traverse, various times, £21.50, £19.50 concs. Tel: 0131 226 0000 edfringe.com Then touring: Sep 5 and 6, Macrobert, Stirling and Sep 13 to 16, Citizens, Glasgow. Nationaltheatrescotland.com