Last night, I attended the one-woman play Nancy’s Philosopher starring the lovely and expressive Kelly Burke, written by David Black.
Through one side of an exchange between Nancy Ord, daughter of Robert Ord, Chief Baron of the Scottish Exchequer, and an unseen and unheard Angus, physician’s assistant, we learn about the social circle in Edinburgh’s well-heeled, sophisticated New Town scene, in which the Ords, James Boswell, Benjamin Franklin, Robert Adam, Jean Jacques Rousseau, and the great Enlightenment philosopher David Hume make their appearances. And through a series of anecdotes, we learn of Nancy’s growing love for the much older, much rounder, and controversial skeptic Hume.
This play is a history and a love letter all in one, and reveals as much about the admiration of the playwright for Nancy’s beloved as it does hers. I won’t offer any spoilers here since the play is so full of delightful revelations and unexpected, little-known connections between great figures in history. I very much recommend you go and see this little gem of a play!
Venue: Anatomy Lecture Theatre, Summerhall, at 1 Summerhall, Edinburgh, EH9 1PL
Price: £15 (concessions £12) / Sat: £20 (concessions £15)
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