Robbie Sherman Explains: Why is Love Birds set in 1923?

RhapsodyInBlue-Skyline

RhapsodyInBlue-Skyline
Love Birds
is set in a vaudeville show in New York in 1923. The year was chosen very specifically. 


Love Birds creator Robbie Sherman (music, lyrics and book) explains:

The year that Love Birds is set is 1923. I chose that year deliberately. That was the year that George Gershwin wrote Rhapsody in Blue (it then premiere in February 1924), and jazz became a formalised mainstream convention within music. That was when the 1920s really became “The Twenties” (as in the ‘Roaring Twenties’), the decade as it is remembered and immortalised by the likes of F Scott Fitzgerald – and, of course, as seen through a dusty Fresnel lens and rose-coloured, nostalgia gel.

Love Birds is about leaving the world of the past and entering the exciting world of the future. It’s about future shock.”

George Gershwin

George Gershwin

For me, it’s this moment of seismic change that really defines the world of Love Birds, and it relates to our world today. Love Birds is about leaving the world of the past (represented by the black and white penguins of my story) and entering the exciting (and sometimes scary) world of the future (represented by the parrots). Love Birds is about future shock.

It’s about taking stock of what you have, figuring out what’s valuable in life, which convictions to cling on to and which ones to discard. Ultimately, while the future may seem frightening at times, it’s where we’re all going to wind up, so we have no choice but to embrace it. That’s what the story is really about.

One of the characters in Love Birds cites the old showbiz adage that, “The show must go on” then another character elaborates, “and that means forward”. That’s how I feel about my family legacy too. I have so much respect for it, but I also want to help move it forward as well.

LOVE BIRDS RUNS 12.35PM DAILY 5-31 AUGUST (EXCEPT 19 AUGUST) AT THE PLEASANCE COURTYARD DURING THE 2015 EDINBURGH FRINGE. BOOK TICKETS HERE.


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