Director and Writer’s Journey
I have always moved to my own drummer. I am drawn to stories that are perplexing, hold no easy answers and don’t reveal themselves until about half way through and then usually in a way that you don’t expect.
This was what drew me into the world of Darwin.
The attraction started almost seven years ago when David Renegar, then the head of VirtuallyAudio, and myself came up with the idea for a new kind of western series entitled “Darwin’s Law”, a story that featured a well-educated former Boston lawyer named Christopher Darwin, who had become a gun for hire and now finds himself at a moral crossroads.
The concept at the time also included a young nurse named Sarah, who disillusioned by a male dominated profession, becomes Darwin’s ‘scientific eye’ as they form a sort of X-files style like partnership solving mysteries in the old west and doing their best to stay alive.
Fast-forward four years, the series name has changed to illustrate its much broader scope and universal themes, “The Darrwin Chronicles”.
The main character of Darrwin has remained intact. Only now he has picked up the additional attributes of reformed alcoholic and lapsed Catholic and although he still finds himself at that crossroads, he now has a demon growing inside keeping him company.
The nurse’s name is now Katherine, who as well as being more mature, now sports a Scottish accent, has a serious opium addiction and harbours a few secrets and demons of her own.
An organization known only as the New South has reared its head composed of a group of very powerful men who will stop at nothing to see a new Confederacy resurrected, even if that involves the taking of innocent lives in a series of brutal terrorist acts. Post-war America has become a chess game with pieces moving across the board and assured victory going to the highest bidder.
The world of Darrwin has grown densely populated by an assortment of interesting characters, each of them dealing with their own personal demons – real and imagined. A collection of motley souls who now find themselves caught in a struggle of good waged against evil with an unholy puppeteer holding tightly on the strings.
This is the tale we wanted to tell; a story of strong men and equally strong woman who have to make hard choices and then face the consequences of their actions afterwards.
This is the reason that myself and a very brave and talented cast embarked on a journey eighteen months ago to arrive at this place. A little battered and bruised, but still eager to share what we had created.
Welcome to the world of The Darrwin Chronicles!
The Darrwin Chronicles Series
What is an Audio Comic Book?
For the last few years VirtuallyAudio has been developing a fusion of graphic novel and radio theatre to produce a dynamic new hybrid. Using popular genres such as science fiction, horror, crime noir, and westerns, VirtuallyAudio has brought a new kind of excitement to the audio theatre realm. Through the implementation of captivating programs like the sci-fi/fantasy series Sectarian Wave and the supernatural western The Darrwin Chronicles, VirtuallyAudio has set out to create the kind of shows we hope will become fan favourites like Frank Miller’s Sin City and Alan Moore’s From Hell and Watchmen.
Working with a talented and diverse ensemble of multi-voiced actors, and pushing the boundaries of sound effects and music design, VirtuallyAudio’s Audio Comic Books break new ground in the medium of audio entertainment. Every cough, explosive shudder and shocking musical chord promises to transport the listener to places and worlds that they have only dreamed of and, in some cases, only had nightmares about.
An Actor’s Personal Journey
by Marcia de Deckere
Evolution. In practice and performance. I have never seen it so fully unfold as I have in this production. Darrwin was first presented to me as the title “Darwin’s Law”. Naturally, I imagined it to be involving microscopic organisms, single celled amoeba and lizards. Lots and lots of lizards. So you can imagine my culture shock when it went to the wild, wild west and cowboys, and demons, lots and lots of demons.
The process of creating this story had an omnipresence of a snake, biblical legends and scientific dogma hovered over our heads during rehearsals. As if the two were butting heads, vying for superiority and in turn the ownership of our lives. Which side will dictate what we believe next? I still wake up in the middle of the night from dreams of a demon trying to suck my soul out of my body. A demon with cold, cold eyes. And I scream but no sound escapes my thought.
Our demons are all around us, but our angles our heroes, our reason is there too. And when we have seen the terror we can create with our mind, one can not help but think of the beauty and wonder and compassion we can create as well.