Enhanced Program Notes

An Evening with the Vegetarian Librarian

An Evening with the Vegetarian Librarian: Enhanced Program Notes

Although my shows are performed live, they have a high audio content so if you are blind or have low vision you might find that they have good accessibility.

Because I'm an independent artist with a tiny budget, I can't generally afford to have audio descriptions for individual shows. however, I have been working to develop Enhanced Program Notes. These notes provide contextual information beyond the script you will hear at the performance. I include these notes as written text on this website and also as audio files on my soundcloud page.

These notes are currently under development, and I will have them ready in time for the next season. In the meantime, I have included the text from the printed program.

From the program

Writer and performer's note

When I began writing monologues exploring family memory and identity, I knew that at some stage I would want to focus on the explicit connection between my family’s influence and my work as a writer and a funeral celebrant. I knew that its core this piece would be about the place of storytelling in our lives. After Pearls and The Forgettory I wanted to create a more playful and lighter piece (without abandoning my attachment to melancholy and poignancy). It seemed natural then, to go back to the librarian characters I developed many years ago in my flirtation with stand-up comedy.

Stand-up wasn’t my natural home, but I have loved breathing life back into these characters. They were first developed over ten years ago when my children were young and my dad was dying. This has been an unexpected opportunity to reconnect to those difficult, but rich and enriching, times.

Of course, the constant theme through all of these solo shows has been grief, that most complex of human experiences. In my storytelling culture, we are taught that stories are linear—a beginning, a middle and an end. But grief teaches us that our stories—our experiences—are also circular and layered. The connections between our stories are constantly shifting. So too are our relationships.

This year has marked thirty years since my mother died, so it feels fitting that I am able to share the work that helps to explain what an influence she has had on my creative life. At the same time, I love having an opportunity to share a work that is so much fun to perform.

Director's note

When both Chaucer and Joyce spoke about finding truth in laughter, they were never to know that it would be needed today more than ever. Our world is changing so quickly, and our external sources of truth are becoming progressively more vague, subjective and sometimes divisive. Thank goodness we can still trust our internal truth-finder—our guts—to bubble with the laughter of recognition when we hear that truth expressed through comedy.

It has been such a pleasure to work with Tracy on this project. It is so different from The Forgettory and Pearls and yet it is a fitting addition to these works reflecting on love, loss and identity. It is a statement of intent for survival, for thriving and for the continuing magic of storytelling.