Thursday, February 17, 2011

Beauty Queen Of Leenane -Review-People's Theatre

Beauty Queen Of Leenane
People's Theatre
16 Feb 2011

You never know what is going on behind closed doors. Some would say you never know what is going on in between the ears of a woman.
When two women are as embittered as Mag and Maureen Folan, then you know there is going to be trouble in store.
Left alone to fend for her scowling and spiteful mother, Maureen, who has a history of mental illness, is very resentful of the price she has paid for not following in her two Sister's voyage of marriage bliss. Mag is the typical interfering mother and wants nothing more than to be fed, watered and be the life and the soul of her daughter.
What will happen when the Dooley brothers-Ray the  village ASBO waiting to happen cheeky charlie and Pato, who has returned to Ireland for a short stay from work in the hell pit of England- become involved in Maureen's life. Will a romance be on the cards? Will the squabbling come to an end? What dark and comical hand will be dealt?

Martin McDonagh's play set in 1989 gave us a glimpse of what it would be like to be under a regime of hatred, lies and deception. Set brilliantly in a gloomy ram shackled cottage in County Galway, this gave us the acceptance of the horrible bindings that these two women share. McDonagh has also written into this play, the sometimes horror of the countryside and how people wish to run away from it's desolation. This was Ray- played by Joe Mclaughlin-all over. His comic touches to his on stage boredom was sometimes a welcomed relief from the psychological happenings elsewhere. Moira Valentine who played Maureen was superb as the downtrodden daughter, only coming to life when let out of her mothers sight for one night only. Peter Harrison (who also constructed the set, along with two other hands) was great as the sometimes bumbling sometimes sweet Pato the potential love interest. His monologue that shared his thoughts and anguish was delivered with brilliant comic and timing touches. The unforgettable Annie Cater, was every sibling's nightmare. As Mag she produced a fantastic performance that got through to the core of the audience with her glares and moans. She made me think that enforced euthanasia should be made very much legal!
The lighting of the set was done in a stirling fashion by Jo Blackett and Catherine Edwards.
Hugh Keegan who directed the play has done a wonderful job in creating a wonderfully witty and sometimes garish production, something The People's Theatre should be very proud of.


15th February 2011 to 19th February 2011

Ticket Prices

Adult £10.50
(£8.50 concessions) 

Michael Hunter

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