I went to see WAR HORSE on Thursday night at the Bord Gais Theatre in Dublin. I’m ashamed to say that this was my first time in this venue, and I was suitably impressed. As expected, this is a very modern building and the layout affords good viewing and comfort, but thankfully still manages to retain that feel of a more traditional theatre. Having seen the movie, I was slightly skeptical that WAR HORSE could transfer successfully to the stage, without losing some of the visual impact which is vital in the telling of this story. Happily I was proved wrong.
Right from the start the audience was drawn into the action. Great lighting and the clever use of clouds to capture both the location and historical time frame were pure genius. Apart from the ‘ human’ cast members, who did a superb job, the beautifully engineered war horses stole the show – a testament to the great skill of the puppeteers. Also, the clever inclusion of a goose added a lighter note to what is an emotionally charged story.The standing ovation at the end hardly reflected the audiences appreciation. This is a wonderful production, way beyond my expectations. If you get a chance to catch it, do so.You won’t be disappointed!
Congratulations! to my good friend and fellow writer Don Cameron on winning the ‘Get Your Book Published’ competition in association with RTÉ Today and New Island Books .
Don’s first crime novel ‘Marked Off’ will be published by New Island Books early in 2015. You can catch up with Don in his weekly column, don’sdublin, in the all new Dublin City Gazzette.
Last Thursday, I made a rare trip across the Liffey with some friends to see a play at the Viking Theatre in Clontarf. The theatre opened two years ago above Connolly’s pub, better known as the Sheds, a popular and longstanding watering hole.
The play, Charlie and Me is based on an adaptation of the book by author Catherine Barry. A published poet and novelist, Barry has previously written fiction: Skin Deep (2004), Null and Void (2002) and The House That Jack Built (2001). Charlie and Me, her first work of non-fiction is based on the author’s own life experiences.
Cathy, a married mother of two, finds herself attending Alcoholics Anonymous, where she meets a man called Charlie, who later becomes her sponsor. The relationship that develops between them takes us on a journey that is both harrowing and humorous in equal measure. This powerful and well written play never fails to engage the audience, as we journey into the world of alcoholism and the pain and suffering it can inflict on family life. But above all else, it’s a tale of hope.
Actors Maeve Fitzgerald and Steve Blount, who played Cathy and Charlie, are without question, two fine actors and brought great passion, sensitivity and humour to their respective rolls.
This production was directed by Peter Sheridan and produced by Donal Shiels. The run at the Viking Theatre, which played to full houses, finished its run last Saturday. If you ever get a chance see this play in the future – Don’t miss it.