Mardling the Bard
Norfolk's answer to the Merchant of Venice
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Much Ado About Nothing - Mardled!

Spin Off in Edinburgh's Henderson's Café again, 17-21 August, 2009, 4pm-4.55pm. Free! A dog's tale - Much Ado About Nothing retold using stories gossip and word play from Wymondham. Read more...


Mardling the Bard, August 2007

Spin Off in Edinburgh! A Norfolk Twelfth Night at Henderson's Café, Edinburgh. All your favourite lines with a bit o' squit woven in!

Dan and Eve

Mardling the Bard: A Norfolk Twelfth Night upstairs at our favourite city pub: The Unthank Arms. This follows on from Spin- Off's hugely acclaimed Midsummer Night's Dream which was a hit at the Edinburgh Fringe last year. The action has been re-set in Geldeston - and real local stories collected by the company plant the Bard's best roisterers firmly in Norfolk soil: Sir Andrew Aguecheek stables his horses at Loddon, and the storm parallels the famous floods of 1947. There's even a lesson in how to be a Norfolk fool!

Hardley Flood
© David Medcalf

Mardling the Bard: A Norfolk Midsummer Night's Dream

"Cor blarst me, thass the Bard!" - Eastern Daily Press, September 8, 2006:

A version of one of Shakespeare's most popular plays performed entirely in Norfolk dialect has proved an unlikely hit at the Edinburgh Festival. The play, under the banner "Mardling the Bard", played to packed houses at the world-famous arts festival - and no-one was more surprised than writer, performer and director Eve Stebbing...

Right: Dan Amis as Nick Bottom, in Mardling the Bard: A Norfolk Midsummer Night's Dream, 2006.


Mardling the Bard: Norfolk's Answer to the Merchant of Venice

"Theatre in the parks" - Norwich Advertiser, July 6, 2001:

Shakespeare gets a once over - the Spin Off Theatre Company's Mardling the Bard: Norfolk's Answer to the Merchant of Venice offers all the ingredients of the original classic - double deals, sleight of hand, dubious exchanges, and flamboyant trickery - with a refreshing mixture of carnival and story-telling.

"Spin Off" - Norfolk Journal, July 2001:

The play, The Merchant of Venice, in Spin Off's own inimitable style, is part of a project called 'Mardling the Bard' - this is when the county's unique story-telling tradition and Shakespeare's plays are usesd to create new performances in unexpected places. This particular production has been developed using tales of sharp dealing gleaned from Norfolk's many markets.

The summer show is part-carnival, part-story telling and reflects the theatre group's interest in the origins of Norfolk tales... in Shakespeare's time, 40 per cent of the population of Norwich were immigrants escaping from, for example, religious persecution in the Spanish Netherlands.

As Eve Stebbing writer/producer says, "There would be all kinds of languages in the streets, all kinds of goods in the market place and many, many exotic scents in the air. And, with the new cultures, so came new yarns to weave into the fabric of country life."

Fen channel
© copyright Graham Hardy

Creative Commons licence: Some rights reserved photo top © copyright David Medcalf, and photo bottom (not Bottom photo) © copyright Graham Hardy, and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

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