Time To Read Those Theatre-Inspiring Books On Your Shelf...
You don't need me to remind you of your suddenly clear schedule, but maybe this post will prompt you to use this time to raid your bookshelf - or that of the person you're isolating with - and see how many are inspired by or have inspired a piece of theatre.
Many of which could actually be from your school days, and novels that you haven't picked up since reading just enough to get through the exams, others may be classics handed down to you, and some may be those picked up halfheartedly in a charity shop one Saturday afternoon. Now is the perfect time to dive in to the stories that inspired the playwrights and creatives to act it for audiences.
The likelihood is, you'll have read at least one of the below during your school days. Whether you gave away the plot twist of Of Mice and Men or told every relative you knew about your John Lennon's assassination and its link to The Catcher In The Rye, the books that filled our English exams did for a reason - they are iconic and have stood the test of the time due to the morals and lessons they carry. They provoke emotion and thought, as all theatre should.
Why not get lost in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn or experience the parties that we all thought we would in the '20s with The Great Gatsby?
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Mark Twain)
The Catcher In The Rye (J.D Salinger)
Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck)
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Mark Haddon)
The Great Gatsby (F. Scott Fitzgerald)
To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory / Matilda (Roald Dahl)
The Woman In Black (Susan Hill) - read our interview with Susan Hill, here!
Daring to explore dark and raw themes at a personal and poignant level; the likes of A Monster Calls discusses grief, and The Kite Runner guilt and redemption within families. The stories have inspired intimate and beautiful plays that introduce them to new generations. With Malorie Blackman's Noughts and Crosses having recently been adapted by the BBC, it's conversation about race and segregation is ever important.
Of course, if you're yet to actually read the Harry Potter novels, it may be time to take a trip to Hogwarts.
These stories simply will not be forgotten and will continue to capture audiences for many years to come.
The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
A Monster Calls (Patrick Ness) - read our review of the show, here!
Noughts and Crosses (Malorie Blackman)
Harry Potter (J.K Rowling)
Y/A reads... Though perhaps slightly more light-hearted than the aforementioned, the frequently visited Y/A reads still deserve an honourable mention for helping us navigate through a let's face it, confusing time with a bit more humour and adventure.
Nick Hornby's High Fidelity follows a group of friends who work in a record store together as they compete to prove themselves of having the most knowledge about music by listing their associations with it. A story about commitment and love, it was made into a feature film before taking the stage. Be More Chill has a cult following amongst theatre fans obsessed with the song, 'Michael In The Bathroom' and the idea of a SQUIB - though the ending differs from novel to stage.
High Fidelity (Nick Hornby)
Be More Chill (Ned Zizzini)
Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief (Rick Riordan)
Wicked (Gregory Macquire)