Pink Floyd/Tom Stoppard
Who is this Tom Stoppard and what has he done with Dark Side of the Moon? A British playwright, Stoppard has given Pink Floyd’s quintessential seminal album, Dark Side of the Moon, a makeover in this one-hour radio play. Simple called Darkside, the play was bankrolled by the BBC to honour the album’s 40th anniversary. Stoppard has written over the music and, unsurprisingly, the play focuses on the morality. British actors Bill Nighy and Rufus Sewell are member of the cast.
STACK Magazine editor Jonathan Alley says: The granddaddy of the ‘concept album’, Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon, is 40.The treatise on sanity, ambitions, destiny, money, power, and death has remained ageless and remarkably accessible, so it’s the perfect thematic and musical support to Darkside, a radio play by playwright Tom Stoppard (Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead). Presenting a series of ethically challenging scenarios via an ensemble cast, it’s set in a near future where “the last fish is gasping underneath a floating island the size of France and the weather forecast is a state secret”. A fascinating re-appraisal, if a touch heavy-handed at brief intervals.
The Telegraph says: “The production matched the sound of the album in depth and complexity. What’s wrong with me? The more I hear it the more maudlin and overblown the music sounds, the more uneasy the mix of jokes and earnestness in Stoppard’s words.”
The Spectator says: “What’s the effect? It gives the album a whole new dimension. In return the music takes us to another place, giving Stoppard’s words much more impact.”