Adam Gordon is an actor and a Director of Tooth + Nail Theatre Company. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, where he grew up, he has been heavily involved in theatre from a young age. In 2010 after graduating from St Andrews University with an MA (hons) in English and Film, he went on to intern for the Writer’s Theatre in Chicago in 2011 before completing the two-year Professional Acting course at the École Jacques Lecoq in 2014. Previous work includes: Estragon, ‘Waiting for Godot’, Muckle Roe Productions at the Byre Theatre and Tour; Hedwig, ‘Hedwig and the Angry Inch’, Burnt Out Bulbs at GRV; (Director) ‘Dracula’, Daysleeper Productions at the Barron Theatre; Laertes, ‘Hamlet’, Two-Day Productions, C Venues, Edinburgh 2009.
In 2014, Adam co-founded Tooth + Nail, an international theatre company, at the Ecole Jacques Lecoq, in Paris. The Company’s original, devised work has been described as ‘dark, funny and highly physical.’ The most recent production, Hummingbird, has been performed at this years Edinburgh Festival Fringe, receiving excellent reviews.
Born in 1854, the original enfant terrible, Rimbaud was a visionary modernist poet who transformed French poetry. A precocious literary genius from the town of Charleville, close to the border with Belgium, in 1871 he was introduced to the older and more established poet, Paul Verlaine, and started a scandalous love affair with him. Shortly afterwards the two poets ran away together to the relative anonymity of London, then a fast-developing industrial metropolis. During the brief time that he lived in London, Rimbaud probably worked on his two acknowledged masterpieces, Illuminations (Illuminations) and Une Saison en Enfer (A Season in Hell). After a terrible row at No 8 Royal College Street, the stormy relationship with Verlaine came to an abrupt end in June 1873. Verlaine later shot and wounded Rimbaud in a hotel room in Brussels, and ended up in a Belgian prison. Shortly after the split Rimbaud gave up literature for ever and went off to become an explorer, trader and arms dealer in the horn of Africa. He died in Marseilles in 1891 at the age of only 37.
8 Royal College Street, Camden – the scene of an iconic transgressive love affair between the French poets Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud and the inspiration behind a new mini-play by Adam Gordon: ‘Croquis Nocturne’.
We asked Adam to tell us a little bit about the characters in his play, Arthur, Paul and ‘Caroline’.
Arthur. Paul. Caroline.
”Paul Verlaine is a poet. He is brilliant and insecure; he needs constant proof of love from Arthur, but is ashamed of his need. He spends the play seeking Arthur’s affection, and mostly not getting it.
Arthur Rimbaud is a precocious genius. He needs to be adored by Verlaine, partly because he knows the relationship will end in disaster, and sees this as a necessary thing. There is something of the cat in him. He is capable of both total focus, and easily distracted; is both playful and sexual. He manipulates the other characters, to both their detriment and benefit.
Caroline is a young woman who seeks to improve her station in life by taking French lessons with Paul Verlaine. She is forced to play Arthur’s game, then gets caught up in it, before coming back to earth with a crash. The experience leaves her shaken. Caroline is strong, sharp and very brittle, like a blade.”
Come along on September 19th to see GoodDog Theatre Co. performers, Simon Gleave, Julien Nguyen Dinh, and Nouch Papazian bring the humour and horror of Adam’s characters to life in a brand new adaptation.