Dorothy Parker - a sparkling wit, a fearless critic and an award-winning writer of stories, poems and screenplays – who could refuse to go Drinking with Dorothy? I’ve been a fan of hers for many years but I first thought of adapting her work for the stage after attending an enjoyable reading of her stories in New York.
My aim has been to bring Parker’s characters to life in performance so we can encounter them in the flesh. Inevitably, in any adaptation, much has to be omitted, but though narration and hilarious descriptions may be lost, what remains are the people – and the true tones of the native New Yorkers she lived among.
Parker’s ear is sharply attuned to the voices around her – and what voices they are – Lily Wynton the great lady of the theatre, Madam Marah the medium, the ladies who lunch on Martinis, and, of course, Dottie herself, hungover and struggling to meet her deadlines.
Parker may mock her characters’ absurdity and affectations, but there is always a sense of compassion for their vulnerability as they try to keep fear and loneliness at bay with wisecracks and alcohol.
It’s been a delight to go 'Drinking with Dorothy'!