Cruel Comedy is a double bill of short plays by the French anarchist writer Octave Mirbeau from his set of Farces et Moralités, first published in 1904. Mirbeau was a pretty savage critic of the society in which he wallowed and I hope I've carried through some of the anger and incredulity that informs Interview, a satire on the press of his day which we've updated to be a take on social media as Snoop. Les Amants - which I've translated as Lovers - is on the other hand a satire on the personal rather than the public.
Looking at my diary 16th April 2020 was a very French day. As well as listening to Building a Library on Fauré and reading Julian Jackson’s biography of de Gaulle, it was also the day where I noted, ‘Started Huis Clos translation.’ What brought that on? Well, the first entry in that diary reads: Today,…
20th Century masterpiece, ‘No Exit’. Written in the claustrophobic atmosphere of wartime Paris this up-to-date production resonates with recent events when lockdown meant that for many the blackly comic aphorism, ‘Hell is other people’, was all too true.
We took the salad of the day and a big planche of cheese with a couple of glasses of Chablis on the side. The salad turned out mostly to be pesto-stirred pasta with a few bits of veg secreted within. Palatable but not exactly what we were looking for. The cheese on the other hand was five varieties of the runny shiznit with a generous helping of rustic bread alongside - definitely a better option. The wine was too warm.
Chekhov as it should be done - intimate, emotional, moving. And funny!
A brief post with the file for the script of 'A Soldier's Song'. Feedback would be welcome!
With 'A Soldier's Song' due to première in a week's time it's time to pay my respects to the London Library - without the benefits that membership brings I doubt that I would have got the project off the ground.
The Devil's Own turn out to be the perfect hosts for this devil of a boy that is Hector Woolley. Read more to find out why ...
After a weekend of Berlioz on Radio 3 it's also now time to reveal that ASoSo (as it's become to cast and crew) is itself inspired in part by Hector Berlioz. On reading the original Marivaux it rapidly became apparent to me that the male lead's romantic obsession with Araminte had a powerful resonance with the real life obsession that Berlioz had with the actress Harriet Smithson
The cast for A Soldier's Song is announced!