Posted by: Lisa Hill | May 16, 2019

Auckland Writers Festival: Orlando (Dyad Productions)

We have just seen a magnificent stage adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s Orlando.  (See my review of the book here).

The performance was a special event for the Auckland Writers Festival, and this is the blurb:

A theatrical triumph and an intriguing exposition of art and identity: personal, sexual, national. Acclaimed British theatre company Dyad Productions present their latest offering – an adaptation of Virginia Woolf’s 1928 satire Orlando: A Biography – with their usual elan. The ageless, gender-fluid, immortal fictional poet Orlando, played by Rebecca Vaughan, sweeps through four centuries of English history. Vaughan’s turn is “towering” (The Scotsman), surpassing her artistry in previous Festival favourites Austen’s Women, Dalloway and Jane Eyre: An Autobiography. Written and directed by Elton Townend Jones.

Supported by Platinum Patrons Julienne Brown & David McLean.

Rebecca Vaughan was superb. In a one-woman performance lasting 90 minutes, she captured the playful persona of her gender-bending character, and with minimal costume changes convinced the audience that four centuries of time were passing.  (The credit for these cunning costume changes goes to costume designer Kate Flanaghan from Dyad Productions (see here, and click her name).  With Woolf’s book transformed from ‘biography’ to a confessional autobiography, Vaughan had the audience captivated from beginning to end, making us laugh when she said ‘If I am rambling, the fault is yours for listening to someone talking to themselves!’ The writers among us also chuckled at the satirical commentary on the travails of a poet subject to the whims of a critic.

If you ever get a chance to see this production, don’t miss it! (You may still be able to get AWF tickets here if they’re not already all sold out).

Image credit:


  1. Reblogged this on Travels with Tim and Lisa.


  2. I read Orlando at university in the early 70s. Have often wanted to read it again, to see it from my older perspective – but it sounds like seeing this could do the job, in 90 minutes!! Great pic too.


    • Keep your eyes peeled for further performances in Australia?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Rebecca! I booked all her shows at my last job. She’s such a wonderful actor and if you get a chance to see her production Dalloway – do. It’s wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m quite sure Dyad would bring its shows to Melbourne. Most artistes who do the longhaul to our part of the world make it worth their while to tour both Australia and New Zealand. (Some of the authors at the Auckland Festival have already been to Melbourne, and probably Sydney too.


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