Tag Archives: love

Theatre Upstairs: Hero

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A new season in Theatre Upstairs has started with what can only be described as one of the most touching love stories told by a man. Ken Rogan’s new play Hero is an absolutely breath-taking one hour piece about a love, loss and life as it happens sometimes.

Smithy (played by Daithi Mac Suibhne) is a good-looking single guy who enjoys just as much the big sport as the company of his best mates. And everything is going well for The Captain Smithy until one night the football pitch converts into a dance floor and he meets her, the girl who is to steal his heart forever. But he doesn’t know it yet. All that matters for the moment is that he, the man, gets her, the woman. Marissa studied law and bends her head the way that makes Smithy forget about everyone else. A couple of unoriginal cheeky chat up lines later, a kiss lands on her cheek that is to change everything… for Smithy. For Marissa life continues the way it used to be: occasional night out with a friend, facebook status updates, texting him when she’s had one too many. All this time, Smithy seems to be happy to fool around and to be fooled. But everything changes when he realises: she is the one, the true love he was looking for. And for the first time, he wants to tell her this using the actual words. But she doesn’t seem to understand. She just wants to have another round. The game has changed for Smithy. The stakes are as high as they have never been. But is he to win or lose this one?

A wonderfully structured piece that goes right through your heart doesn’t only benefit from Rogan’s masterful writing. The outstandingly passionate solo performance given by Daithi Mac Suibhne makes all the justice to the carefully crafted script. It’s all in the little, almost subtle, details that Mac Suibhne brought so skillfully to life with the help of Amilia Stewart, for whom Hero is none the less but a directing debut. Stewart added a very nice gentle female touch to a play both written and performed by a man. It made Hero not only better or different, but very diverse and with a certain grain of profundity .

The magic of the space that Theatre Upstairs is has been hugely enhanced by the absolutely smashing set (by Naomi Faughnan) and lighting (by Eoin Byrne) design. Such a beautiful game of light against the sparkling glass all throughout the piece is indescribable; the perfect example of something that no amount of words can paint and it simply has to be seen.

Once again Theatre Upstairs has exceeded all the expectations and brought to life a truly beautiful and tremendously touching production that has both elements of comedy and tragedy. A play that demonstrates clearly: a true love is always worth fighting for. In association with Lakedaemon, Hero runs till January 28th. For more info or to book a seat: http://www.theatreupstairs.ie/what-is-on

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Project Arts Center: Love+ (Tiger Dublin Fringe’15)

And the second week of Tiger Dublin Fringe’15 is on! I started it with “Love+”, a play directed by Claire O’Reilly.

Love+ is one of those shows, which is 100% fringe and 100% amazing. I will be honest and say that I didn’t know what I signed up to when I booked my ticket. I read the description and it sounded cool, but I had absolutely no idea what kind of treat I was really in for.

Imagine the future, where the human robots are in each and every house. Externally the robots are no different from real people. The buyer can pick and choose which robot they want to purchase. Everything: height, weight, age, eye colour, hair colour, hair length can be adjusted to your personal taste. The robot is always programmed to please you, the owner. It will say what you want to hear, it will cook what you want to eat, it cleans your house and makes your bed… it will do literally whatever you want it to do. In addition to that, the machine (as opposed to  what’s been popularised by the modern TV  and films) can not harm you. It is there to suit your needs 24/7 and beyond. It will never get tired, it’ll never get old…

Everything sounds perfect. The machine is flawless.

But the developers of that “machine” must have forgotten that people, real human beings, aren’t flawless and perfect themselves; that living 24/7 with a creature that never gets fat, tired or moody can be quite discouraging and depressing. But what can be even more depressing is the fact that that robotic creature can never answer back to your feelings.

Jane (played by Maeve O´Mahoney) owns one of those robots (played by Breffni Holahan). Jane and the robot live in a perfect little house where everything is clean, and neat, and perfect… except for Jane, who is very much a human. And with time, she can’t help but fall in love with the robot. Unfortunately, soon Jane discovers that the machine, no matter how human it looks or what it says, is nothing more but a machine. It says “I love you” not because it feels it but because it is programmed to do so. And no matter how hard Jane tries, there is no way of making a machine to either think of feel for itself.

Love+ is a very dystopian play. The dystopia there doesn’t include the world being taken over by the machines. Not at all. It examines an issue much more profound and important: dehumanisation of the society by taking away the ability to feel, to think, to make mistakes… to be who we are – humans.

Love+ is an absolutely beautiful and touching piece of theatre that will break your heart. Holahan’s robotic gestures and almost monotonous sentences are very organically juxtaposed to O’Mahoney´s so natural and so imperfect Jane. Both actresses pose a very beautiful and contrasting ensemble on stage.

With the marriage referendum this year, it comes as no surprise that many of the new works include homosexual motives, Love+ touches a totally different ground! It easily wows away the audience with its light humour, simple but smart set and an almost apocalyptic plot.

Love+ previewed yesterday and will be running in the Project Arts Center till September 17th. For more info or to buy tickets, you know what to do: http://projectartscentre.ie/event/love/

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Life is a theatre set in which there are but few practicable entrances.

Hi to all theatre lovers,

My name is Yana and this is my third blog.

My first page is all about creativity and inspiration https://justyanablog.wordpress.com/

My second blog is about traveling in general and traveling in Ireland in particular: https://picturemetheworld.wordpress.com/

This blog I want to be all about theatre, which is a very big part of my life as I’m an actor in training and a frequent theatre goer. I live in Dublin, Ireland. So most of the productions I watch are staged on Irish stages, but I do travel a lot and when possible I do try to watch something abroad as well.

I try to see at least one production per week, much more during Theatre and Fringe Festivals. I go to see both professional and amateur theatre.

There is a good reason why I’m setting this blog today: tomorrow is the first day of The Symposium of War in Dublin’s Abbey Theatre. I intend to see as many talks and readings as I can during the next three days. And I’d very much want to share my personal impression of it with everybody who hasn’t got the chance to be in the Abbey. Last year I went to The Symposium of Memory and immensely enjoyed, so I look very much forward to this one, too.

My first and main intention is to write about plays I’ll see, but I’m also considering penning posts about the plays I´d seen in the past. Some of which were so exceptionally good that years after I still want to talk about them.

That’s it for now, tune in if you are as mad about theatre as I am. Feel free to comment and share.

And always remember:

 “All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,…”

– W. Shakespeare 

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Filed under Irish Stage, Performing arts, The First One, Theatre, Theatre in Ireland, Theatre Lovers