A Weekend of Monologues

Last week we enjoyed not one, nor two but three monologues, in various locations across Cumbria.

Our first monologue was Robert Lloyd Parry performing two of M R James' spookiest tales. A Pleasing Terror was an excellent introduction to the spooky month of October and, with the setting of the Armitt Library, in Ambleside, provided a really fabulous evening's entertainment.

Robert Lloyd Parry performed two M R James' short stories: Canon Alberic’s Scrap-book and The Mezzotint. In Canon Alberic’s Scrap-book, a young Cambridge antiquary discovers the dark side of manuscript illumination, in a medieval cathedral in the French Pyrenees. In The Mezzotint, a ghoulish revenge is enacted within a work of art, before the helpless eyes of a museum curator.

What a wonderful evening. I was totally gripped by the stories and am really looking forward to Lloyd Parry's next performance.

Next was a trip up to Carlisle for Borderlines and a talk by Robert Twigger (not quite a monologue but close!) in Tullie House.

Robert Twigger talked about his most recent book 36 Islands: In Search of the Hidden Wonders of the Lake District. This was a really interesting talk and we were taken on a journey across the Lakes to discover the secrets of its thirty-six islands. We hadn't realised that there were thirty-six islands before the talk! Twigger uncovered their fascinating histories, from the location of aristocratic homes to spots that inspired Beatrix Potter, from kennel islands for hunting dogs to the model for Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons. This talk was really interesting and illuminating and has made us keen to explore some of these islands ourselves.

Finally, we enjoyed a performance by Dyad Productions at the Old Laundry in Bowness-on-Windermere.

We love Dyad Productions, they are absolutely amazing and this performance of Virginia Woolf's A Room of One's Own was no exception. It almost felt as if Virginia Woolf was in the theatre with us. 

Rebecca Vaughan performed Virginia Woolf's 1928 exploration of the impact of poverty and sexual inequality on intellectual freedom and creativity. She took a wry, amusing, and incisive trip through the history of literature, feminism, and gender. During the monologue we met Charlotte Brontë, Jane Austen, Aphra Behn, and Shakespeare's sister – Judith!

What an absolutely fascinating evening and an excellent end to a weekend of monologues.