Hay Festival of Literature & Arts celebrates its 25th anniversary this year making the Devil’s Violin Company a very apt act to invite back to the beautiful Welsh borders market town which has the biggest treasure trove of bookstores I’ve ever seen (heaven!). The Devil’s Violin Company performance is both slick and spellbinding, few theatrical experiences come close to bringing the ancient art of storytelling firmly into the 21st century.
“A Love Like Salt” unlocks forgotten folk tales that inspired some of English literature’s greatest works – Shakespeare’s King Lear and Chaucer’s Franklin’s Tale and Wife of Bath’s Tale – and The Devil’s Violin takes them on a new voyage of discovery.
Aided by the dramatic, driving rhythms of a skilled and inventive strings and accordion trio, Daniel Morden – one of the UK’s most compelling and applauded storytellers – lures the audience onto a rollercoaster ride in this haunting, hypnotic fusion of music and word.
“How much do you love me?” is a recurring question throughout the show, directed by Sally Cookson. Love is put to the test in three tales as the audience is transported to King Arthur’s Camelot, the Breton shores and the ancient Britain of King Lear.
Suitable for anyone over 12, the audience will meet a knight on a year-long quest to discover what women really want and enter a world where Cinderella meets Cordelia and “Miss Mossy Coat” emerges from “The Land of Ladles” to thrill a prince.
An alchemic experience that will have the Hay audience on the edge of their seats, A Love Like Salt is a rich tapestry, peppered with magic and morals, lovers and lust, desire and disguise and even a man hell-bent on selling his soul to win a woman.
Sarah Moody (cello), Oliver Wilson-Dickson (violin) and Luke Carver Goss (accordion) bring a wonderful edge to the production with their brilliant sense of theatre and timing. The in-demand trio were recently heard on BBC Radio 3 providing music for a new production of The Tempest, part of the Cultural Olympiad whilst Daniel Morden was interviewed on Radio 3’s The Verb. Carver-Goss meanwhile also featured on Radio 3, on Listen to the Band, speaking about his commission to compose a piece for the Black Dyke Band for the 2012 Olympics.
Currently on tour, The Devil’s Violin will also be performing at Yorkshire’s Holmfirth Festival as well as shows from Northamptonshire to Wiltshire.
Timeless and thought-provoking this is a show guaranteed to fire the imagination. Come and see how the story ends.
Tickets for the performance at 8pm on the Starlight Stage are available, price just £5.25, on 01497 822 629 or online at www.hayfestival.com