Shakespeare at the Abbey

Shakespeare Season at the Abbey
Shakespeare Season at the Abbey

I am really enjoying the Abbey’s Shakespeare Season at the moment. On Wednesday evening, I watched Marty Rea and Derbhle Crotty play various Shakespearean characters under the direction of Abbey Voice Director Andrea Ainsworth. There was a bit of Romeo & Juliet and A Midsummer Night’s Dream; we saw Macbeth and Lady Macbeth plotting to kill the king and Beatrice and Benedict trading insults. It was a very enjoyable hour on the impressive King Lear set that is currently occupying the Abbey stage.

The production that goes along with the set is also a treat. It’s a great cast; Owen Roe is a wonderful Lear in kinglyness and madness, while Beth Cooke demonstrates Cordelia’s strength and tenacity despite her slight frame. I also enjoyed Ciarán McMenamin as the scheming Edward and Aaron Monaghan as his betrayed brother. The production is visually rich and suitably dramatic. It’s a very enjoyable show. There are lots of strong, bossy characters in this one. It’s worth catching before it ends on March 23.

Meanwhile, the Peacock is playing host to writer and performer Tim Crouch and his plays I, Malvolio and I, Peaseblossom. I’ve only seen I, Malovolio so far and enjoyed it immensely. Tim Crouch tell the story of Twelfth Night from the perspective of poor, woe-begotten Malvolio, a minor character in Shakespeare’s play. It’s a show that’s funny and sad and will make you feel guilty and uncomfortable. Go see it – you will not regret. Even if you don’t like Shakespeare or are unfamiliar with Twelfth Night, it doesn’t matter – you will still laugh yourself silly at this show.

I, Peaseblossom is the story of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, as told by one of the fairies. It’s aimed at audience members from 6 years upwards. Both are running until the end of next week and there are evening and afternoon performances.

Treat yourself to some Shakespeare at the Abbey. There really is something for everybody. Book here.

Final week of the Dublin Theatre Festival

It’s the last few days of the Dublin Theatre Festival but there is still lots of great theatre to see.

Enron opened on Tuesday and I really enjoyed it. It’s a great, sprawling story which Lucy Prebble has managed to translate into a very neat, very comprehensible play. It gets the balance between story and big, theatrical set-pieces just right and I would really recommend it. It runs until Saturday and there are still tickets available.

I am going to see The Author on Friday and I can’t wait. There was lots of very positive things being said about it on Twitter this morning (and being re-tweeted by the Project and the Festival!). A lot of comments have said things like ‘important’ or ‘thought-provoking’ or ‘controversial’. I’m not sure if it’s an enjoyable play but I am eager to see it. It runs until Sunday and there are still some tickets available.

The final part of the Ontroerend Goed trilogy A Game of You is also on this week. Of the other two, I loved The Smile Off Your Face, I found it a really gorgeous experience but I was a little bit more ambivalent about Internal, still an interesting experience but I don’t think I’d do it again. They are very much immersive theatre and I would recommend giving it a go! I’m curious to see what A Game of You has in store for me. It runs until Sunday and are still lots of time slots available.

I went to see Hugh Hughes open rehearsal today and it was very interesting. He is a very engaging performer and I’m hoping to see at least one of his shows at the weekend, time and money allowing. There is a free screening of the documentary How I Got Here tomorrow at 6pm and his three shows – Floating, The Story of a Rabbit and 360 are all running until Sunday.

There are also free Panel Discussions happening over the weekend. I’m hoping to get the ‘What are you Looking At’ panel on Saturday.