Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Dark Secrets Of Noel Coward's Play 'Volcano'

Michael Thornton at the British newspaper the Telegraph offers the back story to Noel Coward's forgotten play Volcano.

This week, Volcano, a play he wrote in that very house but which was unproduced for 56 years, received its West End premiere at the Vaudeville Theatre. It is set on the island of Samolo (obviously Jamaica), to a background of native drums and the ominous rumble of the neighbouring volcano.
It features a saga of serial infidelity, adulterous betrayal and acrimonious marital conflict taken straight from Coward’s own Jamaican doorstep. The lead role of Adela Shelley, a handsome woman in her middle forties, played by Jenny Seagrove, is a thinly disguised depiction of Blanche Blackwell, still alive in her 100th year, Coward’s former neighbour in Jamaica.
The other two characters in this turbulent triangle – the island’s Lothario, Guy Littleton, and his bitchy and vengeful wife Melissa – are equally thinly disguised portrayals of Coward’s womanising friend, Ian Fleming, the creator of James Bond, who is alleged to have been Blackwell’s lover, and his wife, Ann, the former Viscountess Rothermere.

You can read the rest of the story via the below link:

Note: The top photo is of Noel Coward and the above photo is of Ian Fleming at Goldeneye. 

I visited Noel Coward's Jamaican villa Firefly and my wife and I stayed a week at Goldeneye. Like Coward and Fleming, we love Jamaica and Goldeneye was truly magical.

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