[identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
A while ago, we told you about the play adaptation of The Firework-Maker’s Daughter on at the Theatre by the Lake in Keswick, Cumbria (UK). The play is on until the 7th of the January so there’s still a while left to go and see it! Let our reviewer, Rosie, help you decide…

“It’s hard to think of a more dramatic setting for drama than the Theatre by the Lake, surrounded as it is by snow-clad fells reflected in the tranquil Derwent Water. On a chilly December evening it’s also good to come inside to find some seasonal warmth, and Stephen Russell’s dramatisation of The Firework-Maker’s Daughter provides warmth in abundance.

The warmth doesn’t only come from the play’s tropical setting, amongst the Indonesian rainforests accompanied by gamalan orchestra. The cast throw themselves into the production with gusto. Vera Chok, in the lead, is a suitably feisty Lila (now what does that name remind me of?), the girl who scorns the idea of marrying a prince in the traditional pantomime way, and the irrepressible bounciness she puts into her quest for the secret of the perfect firework is infectious. Mitesh Soni is good as Lila’s humble but devoted admirer, but it’s Declan Wilson as her eternal foil, whether as elephant-master or inept pirate, who puts real fizz into the show every bit as much as the backstage crew who provide the pyrotechnics for the climactic firework competition and the simple but beautiful sets. Joanna Holden is also memorable, variously as a hapless pirate, hapless villager and a tyrant king who makes up in cruelty what she lacks in stature. And then there’s the elephant. How could one forget the elephant?

Philip Pullman is always a very theatrical novelist and The Firework-Maker’s Daughter, as with the earlier Count Karlstein, has its roots in a school play he wrote in his teaching days drawing on ancient folk tales. It’s hardly surprising, then, that the book makes the transition to the stage so seamlessly. It’s not only children who will find this a memorable Christmas show.”

You can book tickets at the Theatre By The Lake website.

[identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
Canongate have published a new edition of The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ this month, due to the book’s success.

The controversial novel retold the story of Jesus as if he were two people, twin brothers; Jesus, a godly man and Christ, a power-hungry one. And was one of the most talked-about books of last year. It has sold over ten thousand copies since its release in 2010.

The book is available on amazon.co.uk and on Kindle.

Below Pullman talks about controvery and his right to write about whatever he likes.

[identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
Back in April we reported that Clockwork, one of Philip Pullman’s novels, had been adapted into an Opera by Visible Fiction and the Scottish Opera, and would be touring through Scotland in June.

Our compatriots over at Cittàgazze managed to get an interview with Douglas Irvine, Visible Fiction’s Artistic Director, about the project and his thoughts on it.

Interview behind the cut )

The interview is available in French over at Cittàgazze’s website.

[identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
Clockwork or All Wound Up has been adapted into an opera by Composer David Trouton and Visible Fiction’s director Douglas Irvine. Both are fans of the classic Pullman fairytale-esque book, which is a spooky story about an apprentice clockwork-maker, a storyteller and a mechanical knight constructed by an evil genius.

The opera, which premiered on Wednesday the 13th of April, ran at the Tron theatre in Glasgow until the 16th of April, and will now be touring around Scotland until June. For information about locations and buying tickets, look here. The opera is suitable for ages eight and up, and is approximately 110 minutes long.

“Douglas Irvine’s adaptation is brisk and beautiful…” – The Scotsman.

If you’re planning on seeing Clockwork or have already seen it – let us know! We’d love to hear your review.

[identity profile] dolorosa-12.livejournal.com
Philip Pullman has revealed to BridgeToTheStars his new project: a retelling of some of the tales of the Brothers Grimm. “This isn’t a book for children only,” he shared with us. “I’m telling the best of the tales in my own voice, and I’m finding it a great purifier of narrative thinking, rather as a pianist relishes playing Bach’s preludes and fugues as a sort of palate-cleansing discipline.”

In the past Pullman has mentioned the Grimm’s Fairy Tales as one of the books that have made the most difference to his life.



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