Notes from a Small Island
By Bill Bryson. Adapted for the stage by Tim Whitnall
Directed by Mike Savill
An amateur production by arrangement with Nick Hern Books
Bryson said of his adopted country, ‘this is the best place in the world for most things’. This adaptation of his extremely popular work takes the essence of his love letter to the British Isles and offers a compact and ambitious study of all those quirks and curiosities which characterise its many and varied locales and folk. Taking place across two acts with upwards of 80 different characters and almost as many locations, it is a journey told using a variety of theatrical conceits, humorously exploring everything from the idiosyncrasies of the seaside landlady, Yorkshire farming, Welsh gossip, travel, the monarchy, politics, Curly Wurlys and kippers!
A high energy journey, it sees inventive use of the BLT stage as the play shifts from public house to passenger ferry, Victoria station to Virginia Park and the seaside to Stonehenge, all conjured up using lights, sound, slides, costume and no small input from an ensemble cast.
Travelling across time and space from the seventies to the nineties, this is a whistle stop tour of British culture through the eyes of an American who begins to ask why does a nation that produced Marmite, Gardeners Question Time and people who say ‘Ooh lovely’ when they have a cup of tea, hold such a special place in his American heart?