Scranton artists to stage original show locally before taking show across pond to Scotland
Somepeople take their showon the road, but a group of Scranton performers will take theirs across the pond.
“The Darling Core,” co- created and co- starring local artists Simone Daniel and Conor Anthony O’Brien, makes its international debut at the 2017 EdinburghFringeFestival in Scotland thissummer.
In case they can’tmake the trip to Europe, NortheastPennsylvania residents have the chance to see it a little closer tohomeas the Cooperage Project, 1030 Main St., Honesdale, hosts two performances of the play today and Saturday. Doors open at 7: 30 p. m. and the showstarts at 8. There is no admission price but donations to benefit the Cooperage are accepted.
The showalsowill appear as a part of East to EdinburghFestival at 59e59Theatres, NewYork City, on July 11 and 16.
The story centers on Adam, the first man, and Lillith, the original firstwomanthat “revisionist history has kind of wiped away,” Daniel said.
According to lore, Lillith left Adamand the Garden of Eden, refusing to be subservient to him, and thus became knownas a demon. In “The Darling Core,” Adamand Lillith are a vaudeville duo and the play takes place backstage at one of their gigs.
“After all these years of working together, they continue to butt heads and not understand each other. Prettymuch like mostmenandwomen,” Daniel said with a laugh.
Daniel and O’Brien originally wrote the showand presented it at PittsburghFringeFestival in 2014, then at local venues including O’Brien’s formerVintageTheater and Olde BrickTheatre and at the CellTheatre inManhattan. Both Daniel and O’Brien acknowledged howmuch the play has grownand changed over the years.
“It’s funny nowhowdifferentwe are and the writing is sincewe started,” Daniel said. “Three years ago wewere like, ‘ This is exactlywhat we want to say.’ But, we’ve changed, and theworld is changed, and looking at it now, we thinkmaybe that isn’twhatwe wanted to say anymore. It’s been a very cool experience.”
The pair also enjoys collaborating with an extended group of artists. As part of NewVintageEnsemble, a collective of regional writers, directors and actors, fresh eyes take a look at the piece each time it’s presented.
For example, they noted that the different perspectives offered from original directorMaggie O’Brien ( nowsupervising producer) to Daniel Holme, who currently fills that role, have been the most invigorating part.
“It’s been a joy frombeginning to end,” O’Brien said, adding that the ensemble’s mission is to “reinvent the familiar” with itsworks. “Workingwith this group of talented artists has been an amazing experience. Whether they’ve beenwith the production since 2014 or came on a little later, the guidance, support, creativity is just unparalleled.”
As co- founder of ScrantonFringe Festival, O’Brien, along with cofounderElizabeth Bohan, will attendmeetings andworkshops in Scotland to bring back to the city’s festival, which returns this fall. “The Darling Core” continues to elevate allwho are a part of it to new heights.
“This has gone places thatwe never thought was it was going to,” Daniel said.“We’ll keepworking on it and seewhat changes, butwhatever happens is further thanwe thought wewere going to be three years ago. Andthat’s really exciting.”