Saturday, September 19, 2020
More
    Play Theater On McQuillan’s Hill, Finborough Theatre – Review – Everything...

    On McQuillan’s Hill, Finborough Theatre – Review – Everything Theatre

    -



    It still amazes me to see a theatre space so utterly transformed between visits. Just a few weeks previously I’d been at the Finborough Theatre and the place felt tiny and cramped, intentionally so for the show at hand. Yet returning again now, the same four walls felt open, even the packed benches felt more spacious. It gave the perfect feel of a small community hall, the sole location for all two hours of On McQuillan’s Hill: a credit indeed to the theatre and set designer Norman Coates. It’s in those four walls of the rundown community hall that…

    Rating



    Excellent

    A smart play that uses the Irish conflict as a backdrop to explore the relationships of its six characters. Very good, but could be even better.

    User Rating: Be the first one !

    It still amazes me to see a theatre space so utterly transformed
    between visits. Just a few weeks previously I’d been at the Finborough Theatre
    and the place felt tiny and cramped, intentionally so for the show at hand. Yet
    returning again now, the same four walls felt open, even the packed benches felt
    more spacious. It gave the perfect feel of a small community hall, the sole
    location for all two hours of On McQuillan’s
    Hill
    : a credit indeed to the theatre and set designer Norman Coates.

    It’s in those four walls of the rundown community hall that
    we bear witness to so much over the course of the two days in which the story is
    set. The first half, encompassing the first 24 hours, introduces us to the six characters,
    their backgrounds explained as well as the relationships between them. It’s here
    that so many questions are left in the air, and at times these opening scenes
    feel overlong.  But this is clearly laying
    strong foundations for the second half.

    Theresa (Julie Maguire), daughter of Fra (Johnny Vivash), is putting on a small celebration to welcome her dad home from prison, released following the Good Friday Agreement that took giant steps towards ending the conflict in Ireland. Through Theresa and all-round busybody Mrs Tymelly (Helena Bereen) we learn of black sheep Loretta (Gina Costigan), Fra’s sister who left long ago after selling the family pub she inherited, leaving the rest of the family homeless. Now though, Loretta is finally coming back, having bought the community hall and invited Ray (Declan Rodgers) to quote to do the place up. Finally we meet Dessie (Kevin Murphy), referred to as an old friend of Fra, although there is clearly more going on between the pair than they would want to let on.

    It’s the second half when the play really starts to fulfil
    the promise hinted at in the first, and those early efforts are duly rewarded.
    Every relationship is put to the test, and the deepest and darkest of secrets
    are slowly revealed.

    This play is strongly written, a testament to the late Joseph
    Crilly. The text may be twenty years old, The Good Friday Agreement may not be
    as fresh in the memory now as it was then, but that doesn’t matter. Crilly
    never takes sides in the complexities of the Irish question, instead mocking
    all sides equally for their attitudes. And whilst the play is deeply set in its
    Irishness, you could most likely take these six individuals, place them in any country
    and the story would still work. That is because Crilly weaves his characters around
    each other to show their faults and humanity. There is also a clear hint at
    toxic masculinity, years before the phrase was even part of our daily vocabulary;
    each male character appears desperate to show how big they are, even at the
    expense of the woman.

    The one problem with On
    McQuillan’s Hill
    is that at times the flow of the play feels disjointed,
    almost as if the cast are unsure of their characters. What should be an ebb and
    flow as difficult conversations take place doesn’t quite roll together,
    possibly caused by a lack of rehearsal or from scenes being cut down from the
    original script. It is a shame as it stops the production from reaching the full
    potential the writing promises.

    However, this is another in a line of strong plays using the
    backdrop of the Irish conflict. Even though it was written twenty years ago On McQuillan’s Hill still feels fresh with
    something important to say, not just about Ireland but that toxic masculinity
    as well.

    Written by: Joseph Crilly
    Directed by: Jonathan Harden
    Produced by: Doreen Productions  & Finborough Theatre
    Booking Link: https://www.finboroughtheatre.co.uk/productions/2020/on-mcquillans-hill.php
    Booking until: 29 February 2020



    Source link

    Latest news

    The desperate race to stop the V2s told in a new book by Robert Harris | Books | Entertainment

    It was the evening of Friday, September 8, 1944, and the crack as it broke the sound barrier...

    CS Recommends: RBG & More!

    CS Recommends: RBG & More! Stuck inside? Don’t know what to watch/read/play/listen to? ComingSoon.net has got you covered. In...

    Coronation Street fans distracted from MURDER story by bizarre blunder

    Fans are questioning Craig Tinker's job in the police... Coronation Street fans have even left confused after watching...

    Nikkei xTrend: [email protected] Franchise Totals Estimated 60 Billion Yen in Revenue – News

    Series originated with arcade game in 2005 Japanese financial marketing website Nikkei xTrend...

    Every 3D Super Mario Game Ranked – Feature

    The release of Super Mario 3D All-Stars has had us debating at Nintendo Life Towers which of the...

    Must read

    You might also likeRELATED
    Recommended to you