Volcano, by Noel Coward, has been touring and is playing now in the Oxford Playhouse. It is coming to the Vaudeville Theatre in the West End in August.
Volcano was never shown in Coward’s lifetime, and this is the first full production. It was probably the play’s overt discussion of sex which was caught by the sensors in the 1950s. However, its plot was also probably just too close to home.
Set on the fictional island of Samolo, a barely disguised Jamaica, Volcano echoes Coward’s own leisurely lifestyle during his tax exile. He whiled away the days in his two Jamaican residences, Blue Harbour and Firefly. It was here that he entertained a whole crowd of theatre celebrities, before the days when the public and the paparazzi could easily pursue. Ivor Novello and Bette Davis also had residences nearby, Coward himself played host to John Gielgud and Laurence Olivier on occasion.
Starring Jenny Seagrove, Dawn Steele and Jason Durr, Volcano will be at the Vaudeville Theatre 14th August to 29th September.