“Boys will be boys.”
There is a very particular type of people on this earth – the “live for the weekend” type of people; those who drag themselves through the week just so they can enjoy the hell out of a weekend. And we all know what “enjoy” really stands for. If a weekend was good who cares that you don’t remember more half of it?
Rocket Octopus Theatre Company presents Boyz from Harcourt Street. Fosterson (played by Keith-James Walker), Gavmeister (played by Brendan O’Donohue) and D’Arce (played by Laurence Falconer) are indeed three boys; it’s true that they are already in their twenties holding an office job and being able to pay for their own booze and coke (and not the pepsi kind), but no tongue would turn to call those three – men. Cubicle next to cubicle, they spend one hundred percent of their time together: be it at work, home or out partying. They know each other better than anyone else; they’ve been almost hand in hand through it all: love, loss, buying cocaine off a junkie, crashing a car, spending a night in a stranger’s house in Carlow (yes, it is a big deal when for somebody whose comfort zone quite literally goes as far as Dublin’s Harcourt Street), being possessed by a demon… but it seems like nothing can destroy the friendship of these three. But (and there is always a but -one way or another – in every good story) something big is going to happen, and it’s going to happen soon.
Boyz of Harcourt Street, masterly directed by Eoghan Carrick, presents easily recognizable elements of Commedia dell’Arte, which converts this play into a complete and utter farce, but a hugely hilarious and enjoyable farce.
Devised by the performers themselves (apart from Walker, who is replacing Rex Ryan for this run) and Ian Toner, Boyz of Harcourt Street presents an absolutely brilliant and skillful ensemble of acting, miming and movement. The easily identifiable ruthless and careless white collar fellas, who clearly live for the party and buzz, become somewhat more human and interesting to watch thanks to the perfectly timed facial and physical expressions given by the three actors on stage. And even though the play is an unstoppable comedy from beginning to end, the theme of loosing a friend finally finds its absolute climax in one of the very last scenes and it’s heartbreaking.
Boyz of Harcourt Street stands out from the very first second. It might not even be the script or the directing, but the fact that it’s one of very few plays nowadays that uses hand-made sound effects on stage (by Tiernan Kearns). It’s a rarity and a real privilege to witness such a precise and well-crafted masterpiece of sounds used during a live performance. The absolute genius of it is that thanks solely to those sound effects and put-on voices, a whole world was created. The play also benefited hugely from the usage of music (the cheesy over-played but yet so beloved and nostalgia-evoking tunes from the 80s) and movement bringing otherwise static scenes to a complete change of mood and energy.
Boyz of Harcourt Street is perfect for a fun night out. This easy to watch and to enjoy ridiculously amusing play will keep you laughing and cheering long after it’s over. For more info or to book tickets: http://smockalley.com/boyz-harcourt-street-2/