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The Business of Murder – a theatre review

Published February 5, 2015 by Naomi Rettig

The Business of Murder: Theatre Review
This business is booming. The whole play was a ticking time bomb throughout: tense, taut and tantalisingly terrific. I won’t reveal any spoilers as I urge anyone near to a theatre on the tour to treat themselves to a performance. And what a treat.
Written by Richard Harris (not the famously known Irish actor but the screenplay and playwright) the plot had more twists and turns than the Stelvio Pass in the Italian Alps. Just when you think you know what’s going on you are flung fiercely in another direction. I was exhausted on exiting. And at one point, with a gasp of ‘dear God no’ from behind me, I thought an elderly lady was going to have a coronary attack. Luckily she didn’t as I’m not a first aider and I didn’t want the play interrupted.
The set was perfectly designed and kitted out with 1981 décor. I definitely spotted my mum’s trailing spider plant in a knitted macramé holder hanging up. Sound and lighting was top notch too as was the direction by Michael Lunney. And what a wonderful cast he had to direct. There were only three actors in the play but they not only carried it successfully they lifted it aloft. Joanna Higson played Dee and was delightful. I won’t reveal too much about her character but it was excellently portrayed and I look forward to seeing Joanna in many more roles. Paul Opacic played policeman Hallett, good cop or bad cop? My lips are sealed, but he was fantastic in the role, persuading my opinion of Hallett’s virtue to waver throughout. Robert Gwilym played Stone. I can honestly say his portrayal creeped me out so much I wouldn’t want to share a lift with him. He made Norman Bates seem a rational pleasant person.
I highly recommend The Business of Murder if you love quality theatre, enjoy a good murder and like your spine tingled. The Business of Murder by the Middle Ground Theatre Company is definitely a thrilling partnership that had me sold. Bravo.

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Hotdog

Published January 15, 2015 by Naomi Rettig

Hotdog stand, half time at football match.
A hotdog stand is set up on SL, faint football crowd noise can be heard in the background, EDDIE is stood behind the hotdog stand stirring onions in a pan, there is a queue of people to the right of the stand, JAMES is stood at the front of the queue.
EDDIE: Aright mate, what can I do you for?
JAMES: Chicken please.
EDDIE: Chicken?
JAMES: Yes, a chicken pie please.
EDDIE: I do ot dogs. I aint got no chicken pies.
JAMES: A steak and kidney pie then?
EDDIE: You avin a laff?
JAMES: Not at all. So you don’t have any steak and kidney pies either?
EDDIE: No I aint got no bleedin pies, I got ot dogs.
JAMES: Do you have a beef and onion pie then please?
EDDIE: Listen mate, I’m gonna do you some damage if you carry on askin for a bleedin
pie. You can eiver av an ot dog or you can do one.
JAMES: Ah, is there a special nod or handshake I need to partake in to be able to have a
pie? (winks at Eddie)
EDDIE: Special nod or andshake?! I’ll give you a special nod if you don’t clear off you
nutter.
JAMES: Well, we clearly seem to be on different pages sir, and quite frankly I find you
extremely ill mannered.
EDDIE: Diff’rent pages? You’re on a diff’rent bleedin bookshelf mate! Now clear off
before I shove my boot up your arsenal.
(JAMES walks away SR shaking his head in disgust, EDDIE carries on in the background serving the queue, DAVINA enters SR, sees JAMES and walks towards him)
DAVINA: Darling! You’ve been gone such a long time I’ve come on the hunt for you.
JAMES: Sorry sweetie, I’ve had no joy with the food, the man on the stand was so
unhelpful. He protested he had no pies at all.
DAVINA: Well of course he doesn’t silly, he sells hot dogs.
JAMES: But sweetie, you said he had lovely pies.
DAVINA: (laughs) Oh darling you are too funny. Yes I did say that, I was speaking the in
the amusing slang these people use. I said he had nice pies. Eyes silly, eyes. He
has nice eyes!
JAMES: Oh! I’m such a silly billy!
(JAMES and DAVINA laugh together, hold hands and exit SR)