I’ve only had the chance to get to one event this year at Bude’s Literary Festival, but what an event it was.

It felt, in the under-populated Parkhouse’s Ivor Potter Hall, that people in Bude were missing a trick, for this was an excellent twenty-first century take on Virginia Woolf’s celebrated pre-TED talk! As actor, Rebecca Vaughan said at the end, the audience was small but very select!

Rebecca (Female Gothic, OrlandoChristmas GothicDallowayAusten’s WomenJane Eyre: An Autobiography) performed Virginia Woolf’s 1928 exploration of the impact of poverty and sexual inequality on intellectual freedom and creativity.

She walked, in the style of the celebrated Woolf, an incisive trip through the history of the canon of literature, amply sprinkled with references to feminism, and gender, in a perfect world where the audience ‘met’ Charlotte Brontë, Jane Austen, Aphra Behn (the Restoration writer described by Woolf as having ‘earned [women] the right to speak their minds’), and Shakespeare’s sister – Judith! 

Anyway, just a heads up, if you ever see another Dyad Production advertised as performing in Bude, do get a ticket, because the quality is sublime (just how does someone talk for an hour with no notes, plenty of dramatic intonation, and a wearing a Woolf-like costume?)

5 stars all round in reviews seen at other venues.