Eternity in an Hour

William Blake's story in his own words – Visionary imagery, passionate music, deep human drama.

A 75 minute multi-media spectacular using original live music, dance and drama with moving visual projection, ‘Eternity in an Hour’ is ideal for families and schools audiences. 

‘A theatrical smorgasbord of dancing, singing and storytelling wonderfully presented in an entertaining package’  New York Theater Review

‘Visually stunning…an acoustic feast…a must see’  Marion Drew, EXTRA! EXTRA!

Theatre of Eternal Values is thrilled to announce its forthcoming European tour of ‘Eternity in an Hour’ and is currently taking bookings for 2011/12.

MAY 2010 - Tour in Turkey click to know more


Based on the successful West End show ‘William Blake’s Divine Humanity’, the centre-piece of London’s Blake 250 Festival in 2007, this one-act multi-media drama premiered at the Helsinki Festival in 2008 and has since performed at the the National Theatre of Switzerland in Basel and Geneva, the New York International Theatre Festival and in Milan, Perugia and Rome. The show lasts 75 minutes, fusing original live music, dance and drama with moving visual projection.  A hit with theatre audiences across Europe, ‘Eternity in an Hour’ is ideal for schools wishing to experience directly the life, work and unique vision of William Blake.

Not only is William Blake the foremost religious painter that Britain has ever produced; he is also the father of English Romanticism, the instigator of the English Gothic revival and one of the greatest poets of the English language.

The show embodies the universal ideal of the ‘Culture of the Spirit’, expressing the deepest and most vibrant aspects of our common humanity through the genius words and images of William Blake.

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Also on offer to theatre audiences and schools:
•    Pre-show Performance Lecture (1 hr)
•    The Blake Experience Workshop (maximum 50 participants) (2 hrs)
•    Combined Performance Lecture and Workshop for Schools (2-3 hrs)
•    Concert of Blake’s ‘Songs of Innocence & of Experience’ (1 hr)
•    After-show Q&A: meet the cast, writer & director (1 hr)

For more information and bookings contact:

Booking enquiries:

New York Theater Review - Saturday, August 14, 2010

"There are many reasons to go see Eternity in an Hour but perhaps the most compelling is the stunning performance by UK actor Tim Bruce. Inspired by the life and work of English poet, painter and printmaker William Blake, Eternity in an Hour is a theatrical smorgasbord of dancing, singing and storytelling wonderfully presented in an entertaining package. The piece inspires and delights while offering a glimpse into the heart of a man searching for beauty all around him." 

Marion Drew . theatre Critic EXTRA EXTRA

…a wonderfully lyrical production…visually stunning… an acoustic feast… a must see, not only for Blake lovers, but for those who are perhaps experiencing Blake for the first time this is an entrancing introduction.'

Lloyd Evans, Theatre Critic, THE SPECTATOR

 ‘…Attains real beauty…'

Stephen Tortora-Lee, THE HAPPIEST MEDIUM

"...A multimedia extravaganza..."

Sara-Mae Tucson, Theatre Critic, UKTHEATRE.NET

 ‘…Startling imagery… a vibrant international cast of dancers, mimes and actors… a loving and sophisticated work …'

Theatre Industry Review

Colin George, Actor and Theatre director
(founding Artistic Director of Crucible Theatre, Sheffield and a member of the Royal Shakespeare Company 1994-99)

‘Thoroughly pleasurable theatre presented by an international company, whose tightly focused production demonstrates a dedication to the crafting of an artistic and spiritual experience...The performance is lively, and continually involving – with music, dancing, singing and effortless change of scene, accomplished with very effective lighting … A programme note says – “enjoy the performance and let Blake do the rest.” I cannot improve on that.' 

Education Review

J. M., Head of Creative and Performing Arts

‘Our school took a group of IB Theatre Arts students and teachers to the performance of Eternity in an Hour, where we all experienced an evening of great artistic merit. Not only was it a wonderful opportunity for students to see professional actors on stage, as a genuine piece of ensemble theatre, it drew on all the ideas of the ensemble technique which is a feature of our own programme at school. 

As an ensemble piece, my students were also able to make many connections with the theorists and practices they have studied themselves, including the mask (Commedia dell’Arte), the symbolism and significance of movement (classical Indian dance -Bharata Natyam) and the 8 Effort Actions of Laban. 

The work of Blake, both as an artist and painter has great potential for exploration through dance, movement, text and song, and in this performance, these elements combined to introduce our students not only to the work of this great man, but also to the many possibilities the theatre presents. The workshop which followed provided a hands-on practical experience which every one thoroughly enjoyed. The students were totally involved with the work they were asked to do and it was an excellent learning experience for all.’

Writer : Tim Bruce
Directors: Eric Loren, Monia Giovannangeli
Choreographers: Monia Giovannangeli, Marja Merisalo 
Original Music: Victor Vertunni, Tim Bruce, Deborah Eckman (Jerusalem), Andreas Van Engelen, Carl-Johan Haggman
Costumes Marianne Schulz 

Cast: Victor Vertunni, Tim Bruce, Monia Giovannangeli, Marja Merisalo, Nicolette van T’hek, Leo Vertunni, Carl-Johan Haggman

To see world in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower
Hold Infinity in the Palm of your Hand
And Eternity in an Hour.’
from ‘Auguries of Innocence’, 1803

The Creative Journey

Making the un-manifest manifest is never easy, especially in a theatre. The complexity of Blake’s work is at times breath-taking, at other times child-like in its simplicity; yet we found that Blake’s core symbols spoke directly to the imagination (Jung’s ‘Collective Unconscious’) unlocking the creative energies of the international ensemble of actors, dancers and musicians. It has led to rich and imaginative productions that have been acclaimed by critics and public alike. (see annexed reviews)

Much of the text is derived from the prophetic books such as Jerusalem and Milton; Songs of Innocence and Songs of Experience as well as from Blake’s letters. Naturally, poetic license was called for to weave Blake’s words into drama, but we have tried as far as possible to be true to the spirit of Blake. Similarly, we have used Blake’s ‘actual’ words (which were later reported by witnesses interviewed by Blake’s first biographer, Alexander Gilchrist) when portraying some of the key moments of his life. The inclusion of live music and singing add rhythm and melody to the unfolding drama.
Tim Bruce, actor and writer

Eternity in an Hour

“Hold infinity in the palm of your hand.” Explore the life of William Blake – visionary imagery, live music, passionate movement, deep human drama – at once breath-taking in its complexity whilst child-like in its wonderment. Blake’s story in his own words!


Blake is born into an earthly world of 18th Century London, yet one filled with spirits and angels and the indomitable power of the human imagination. As he grows to be a man, he battles against poverty and the social wrongs of industrialised England. He masters  the arts of drawing, painting, engraving and poetry to become a revolutionary hero, rousing up the artistic youth of London to throw away artifice and be true to their own imaginations. 


In development since 2005, the original William Blake full-length theatre production entitled ‘William Blake’s Divine Humanity’  was the centre-piece of the Blake 250 Festival in November 2007 and premiered at the New Player’s Theatre in London’s West End. The play was afterwards nominated for the 18th Meyer-Whitworth Award administered by the Royal National Theatre. Since then a one act touring version entitled ‘Eternity in an Hour’ has premiered at the Helsinki Festival in 2008, toured Italy and Switzerland in 2009 and formed part of the New York International Theatre Festival in August 2011.The blended media used in this theatrical production bring to life the intense dramatic nature of his poetry and the visual power of his illuminations for a modern audience in search of a new paradigm of human happiness


Backstage photos