Two great artists – Robert Louis Stevenson and Paul Gauguin – confront their own mortality in the strange and supernatural Polynesian islands they made their home.
‘Long pig: A white man to be eaten’
Deep in the Polynesian islands of the Pacific Ocean, hungry spirits circle the homes of Scottish writer Robert Louis Stevenson and artist Paul Gaugin, who lived and died on the islands only a few years apart.
Stevenson has spent thirty years in rigorous combat with the Grim Reaper, but is he finally ready to concede defeat? Gauguin has bought rum, arsenic and morphine for his suicide cocktail and is certain he’s not long for this world, but he’ll be damned if they give him a Catholic burial in consecrated ground.
As their final hours approach, they face the eternal question: is it how we prepare for death that really governs the way we live?
Nigel Planer’s play Death of Long Pig was first staged at the Finborough Theatre, London, in 2009.
‘A meditation on cultural identity… I left the theatre impressed by Planer’s curiosity and intelligence’
— The Times
‘No boring history lesson, but an opportunity to observe the artist, facing death, battle-scarred by the compulsion to create against reason’
— British Theatre Guide