Me, Myself & I: History

Me, Myself & I was the fourth revue to feature a collaboration between Alan Ayckbourn and the composer Paul Todd and it followed their first successful full length musical, Suburban Strains, which had premiered in 1980. Me, Myself & I stands as the most well-known of their revues.

Me, Myself & I was premiered as a lunch-time revue in the Studio at the Stephen Joseph Theatre In The Round, Scarborough, during the summer of 1981. Originally entitled Me, Myself & I: The Inside Story, it was presented in five parts: the instrumental only Prologue, Me, Myself, I and the instrumental only Epilogue. Little known is the fact that instrumental only performances of Me, Myself and I took place on 11 - 13 August.

In the original piece, each part of the revue sees the lead character Mary - portrayed by three women as Ego, Super-Ego and Id (Me, Myself & I) - meet a different man; two reporters and her husband. The
Prologue and Epilogue featured only the musicians reprising music from all three revues as well as some of their own compositions - these were dropped from subsequent productions of the piece.

Me, Myself & I proved to be a success, Alan and Paul believed it worked more effectively as a single full-length piece and stitched the revues together to form a more substantial revue. This version was premiered by the Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, during Christmas 1982 and was so successful the theatre revived it in summer 1983. Prior to this revival, Paul Todd re-worked the material adding two new songs with the show now running at two hours.

The revue was then produced at the National Theatre in 1985, where Alan was directing
A Chorus Of Disapproval, as a late night piece for the Lyttelton Buffet. Alan again re-worked the material, with Paul Todd, to create a two-act revue with an altered structure and with several songs removed; the two reporters were merged into one character with both the reporter and husband played by the same actor. This version was later published in 1989 by Samuel French and is considered the definitive version of the revue.

The Orange Tree would again revive the revue in 2003, although this time it was present in the revised two act form created for the National Theatre.

Article by Simon Murgatroyd. Copyright: Haydonning Ltd. Please do not reproduce without permission of the copyright holder.