The first week of Tiger Dublin Fringe’15 is drawing to its end. I have to acknowledge that all the productions I have seen so far have exceeded all my expectations, this year’s festival is filled with real gems – bold exciting plays.
Harder Faster More by Red Bear Productions is no exception. This production challenges the very structure of a conventional play: all the action takes place over the phone. It gives the audience the feeling of listening into other people’s conversations. Some of them are funny and entertaining, some of them are painful and heartbreaking. All the conversations of those people who live in different houses, neighbourhoods, possibly countries have one thing in common: exploitation of sex.
Every phone conversation is nothing like the previous one; it brings a very distinct energy onto the stage and to the audience. Tears, laughter, awe… it’s a rollercoaster of emotions. In a space of seconds you can go from one to another.
Charlene Gleeson, Clare Monnelly and Aoibhéann McCann each play a number of diverse characters. An angry wife calling her husband’s lover just to find out the awful truth, the TV hostess who is being fired for getting old, the girl who has left home looking for a better life just to end up as a pole dancer, mother whose daughter was bullied into killing herself,… are just some of those stories.
Some conversations are really difficult to listen to. But those stories are the ones that mostly need to be listened to and actually heard. Unlike in the play, in real life it’s too easy to close our eyes and keep moving on with your life. Especially if it doesn’t concern you: it´s happening to somebody else equals to not happening at all.
It’s great to finally realise that Ireland’s becoming a country where talking about sex isn’t taboo anymore. An absolutely sold out show yesterday, is just another proof that sex sells, and sells well… but in a different context this time. Red Bear Productions brought to our awareness this play, which is absolutely filled with wit, fun and entertainment, but, at the same time, it draws out attention to something much more important. All those subjects discussed by the actresses over the phone, that’s not a play, that’s real life. And just as we sit down to watch another play, somewhere somebody is being bullied, is being treated inappropriately, is selling sex over the phone just to be able to provide for their families.
Plays like Harder Faster More must exist to open publics’ eyes onto something that we deliberately would shut our eyes on in real life.
There is still one more performance of Faster Harder More, written and directed by Tracy Martin, tonight before it closes. So get your tickets booked before it’s too late. For more info, please visit: http://fringefest.com/festival/whats-on/harder-faster-more