Theatre company Dyad have continued their successful collaboration with acclaimed director Guy Masterson, following the one-night-only staging of ‘The Diaries of Adam and Eve’ at Kilkenny’s Watergate Theatre last week.
Twain’s original lively and humourous short story, ‘Extracts from Adam’s Diary’, was a satire of the first man’s experiences in the Garden of Eden, and in particular, his coming to terms with the arrival of a new creature, Eve.
Apparently, Twain drew much of his inspiration from his relationship with his own wife.
‘Eve’s Diary’ was later on published as a follow-up to it, recounting her side of the story. It contains some beautifully written passages, as she muses on her affection for Adam, on ‘The Fall’ following her encounter with the serpent, and life ‘After Eden’.
It’s one of Twain’s classics, and Dyad do it justice. Elton Jones Townend (Cutting the Cord), who also plays Adam, wrote the play, adapting the two stories and amalgamating them into one.
He is joined on stage by Rebecca Vaughan (Austen’s Women, I, Elizabeth, Female Gothic) in a sparkling double act.
There are always limits when it comes to a two-person performance, but Dyad manage to overcome it by quickfire dialogue and movement, and occasional audience engagement; as well as observer, the audience occasionally become ‘the other animals of the garden’.
Sound effects and music from award-winning composer Waen Shepherd also creates the backdrop of (routinely shattered) serenity and sanctuary. The set is sparse – two trees, two deckchairs and a pond, for the most part.
The bulk of the dialogue is from Eve; she prattles on over Adam’s grumblings and prolonged silences.
Elton Jones Townend’s garmentry is a little unusual; although the Hawaiian shirt is preferable to the prescribed nudity of the original biblical shenanigans.
The pair invent language, name creatures, discover fire and sample the unreality of life as they overcome their differences to live and love together.
Dyad was formed in 2009 by Rebecca Vaughn and Elton Townend Jones. The group creates, produces and tours with productions ranging from classical theatre to contemporary satire.
For more information, visit www.dyadproductions.com.