The play offers a glimpse of life in and around the river and the conflicting hopes and dreams of the fish, amphibians, worms and dragonflies who make it their home.
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The play offers a glimpse of life in and around the river and the conflicting hopes and dreams of the fish, amphibians, worms and dragonflies who make it their home. Only the amphibians (a natterjack toad and a great crested newt) are entirely happy with things as they are but sadly their very presence offends one of the fish (Aunt Charlotte) who feels that they lower the tone of the river. She’s the bane of Uncle Percy’s life – very much a live-and-let-live kind of fish. Alvin, their nephew, is a smolt or young salmon. As he’s about to follow his absent parents downstream and away across the ocean, he has a built-in wanderlust, which here expresses itself in his desire to find out what life’s like on land. The amphibians (Isaac the newt in particular – a great scientist) set out to help him achieve his goal – to Aunt Charlotte’s horror. Glory, the dragonfly nymph, also dreams of life on land, but doesn’t feel cut out for it. Finally on land the worms look at the river and resent the fact that, while they’re cramped and over-crowded on land, the river is virtually empty. Their race memory tells them they first lived in the water but somewhere down the line they took a wrong turn and now it may just be that the river is a reminder of a worm paradise lost– until human intervention changes everything.