Tag Archives: theatre

Absolut Fringe review: HEROIN

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of THEATREclub and I’ve got last year’s Fringe to thank for that. That said, my approach to their first show (one of three) in this year’s programme was mixed. I arrived with expectations subdued. I left mesmerised and in awe of writer and director Grace Dyas.

“HEROIN is the story you were never told about the new republic, of the person you never saw, of what you built and them demolished.”

2 years in the making, HEROIN is a compelling and powerful portrayal of a dark side of Dublin that I know little about and receives little attention now that the only story in town is the recession.

I wish there was a record of my life. Like CCTV.

Three characters – Barry, Ryan and Lauren – play actors who each want to tell their story. Barry is the cornerstone of the show – he directs and narrates the performance as well as telling his own experience of life tainted by heroin. He delivered the most powerful performance I have seen in Fringe or indeed on stage in quite a while.

It’s fine though coz none of this is really happening. They’re telling us it’s not happening.

You could feel a sort of a magnetic tension in the room as the audience got increasingly drawn into the emotional, sad and difficult story unfolding.

It’s no accident that HERION has been getting four star reviews from the Irish Times and Irish Theatre Magazine. I’ve had the bones of this review sitting in draft since Friday because I simply don’t know how to do it justice.

Go and see it before it ends in Smock Alley this Friday. Book the individual show or get all 3 THEATREclub shows for €32 via links on their page www.theatreclubbing.com.

Absolut Fringe review: As You Are Now So Once Were We

The trailer:

The blurb:

Why haven’t you read Ulysses? Ulysses is Dublin. You live in Dublin. So do we. Four actors in a city we don’t really know pick up the most important and unread book in Irish history and follow James Joyce as he invents a whole city and its people.

Except they’re doing it with cardboard boxes in the upstairs venue of the Project Arts Centre. The Company won last year’s Spirit of the Fringe award and I was cursing my luck not to have caught any of their performances that bagged them the accolade. So I got my tush in the door for the preview show of the tongue-twistedly titled ‘As You Are Now So Once Were We’.

It’s an interesting concept and an interesting execution of the idea. Straddling the worlds of theatre and performance art the four young actors take us on a uinque trip through their day in Dublin.

It was enjoyable performance with plenty of laughs along the way and some great choreography but Tanya’s sequence of forgetfulness about halfway through seemed to make the whole show lose its rhythm a little. Maybe that was the point – who knows?!

I’m marking it as “just wasn’t for me” or possibly I wasn’t in the right frame of mind as I never really engaged with it. Still worth seeing though and I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for more productions by The Company down the road.

Catch it Monday to Wednesday at 9pm at the Project Arts Centre. Tickets are €14 and available here from the Absolut Fringe website.

Absolut Fringe review: My Life In Dresses

Have you seen this dress?

“It’s all memories”.

Sorcha Kenny loves dresses. More specifically, she loves vintage dresses and not simply for the look or feel of them but for their stories and experiences.

A few months ago Sorcha embarked on a quest to collect these stories from around the country via her blog – http://mylifeindresses.wordpress.com. The show takes us through a sample of the dresses and their stories filled with nostalgia, tears and laughter.

One of my favourite moments was during the submission “dresses made special by a former lover”. With an accompanying photograph the contributor describes her “dress of power”:

“I only wore it when I wanted to manipulate him.”

The knowing chuckles and shrieks of laughter through the mostly female audience was just brilliant.

I felt the overall show lacked a bit of continuity and flow but then again, it was a preview show so I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt. While I wouldn’t say it’s exclusively for girls, it will strike more of a chord with the ladies. Either way, a fun way to pass an hour for less than €15.

You can catch My Life In Dresses at the Project Arts Centre every night this week at 7pm until Saturday. Grab your tickets at the Absolut Fringe website or here on the Project Arts Centre website.

Need therapy?

Fear not! Group Therapy for One is happening in Dublin this coming Friday and Saturday ahead of a show at the Kilkenny Arts Festival. Win.

The official gist:

Shane’s a bit fucked up.

He wants you to be the witness at an inquest into his life.

With the softness of his mother, and the bravado of his father, he will tell you things he doesn’t want you to know.

Some say he’s comedy gold. Others think he’s self-indulgent. Why don’t you decide?

Group Therapy For One was first presented at the ABSOLUT Dublin Fringe Festival 2009, where it was performed in Shane’s family home and nominated for Spirit of The Fringe.

It was my favourite show of Absolut Fringe last year, my sketchy review is here if you fancy more info.

It’s different, it’s fun and it’s challenging.

Grab your tickets for the Friday show here and Saturday show here at City Arts Centre on Bachelor’s Walk – it’s a steal for a tenner. And maybe give them some Facebook love while you’re at it.

See you there.

Friday @ Summer Sensational, Temple Bar

So Friday is almost upon us and it’s set to be a busy day at Summer Sensational in Temple Bar. Here’s the rough scheme of things for today:

Some cherry-picked musical highlights of the day:

Play with Music at The Contemporary Music Centre

The CMC are hosting a range of installations by multimedia students from around Ireland. Bring the little ones (of 4+) and get creative with the sounds, sights and gadgets at CMC between 1 and 4pm. More info available here.

A Musical Menu at The Queen of Tarts

A delicious slice of cake in one of the yummiest places in town with a string trio on the side? Fancy that? Well then head for The Queen of Tarts on Cow’s Lane at 3pm.

Julie Feeney & Tarab at Meeting House Square

The gorgeous poppy sounds of Galway girl Julie Feeney followed by a lively mix of jazz and traditional music from across Europe in the form of Tarab at Meeting House Square at 7pm. It’s free but you better book your tickets here quickly!

Dirty Dancing – Movies on the Square

What better way to round up a musical day in Temple Bar than with this 80′s classic. Get ready to dance in the aisles (well, the street I guess) and sing along. Tickets are going faster than you can say “no-one leaves Baby in the corner” so get in touch with TBCT now! Starts at 10.30pm.

See you there!