Saturday, January 18, 2014

Irish play Dancing at Lughnasa at DUCTAC

I had myself a little Irish theatre experience over the weekend with Dancing at Lughnasa, the debut production of a group that calls itself "Danu". The play itself, however, has a long history, and was even made into a feature film. About two hours in length, it was staged in one of the better-done sets I've seen at DUCTAC's Kilachand.

Set in inter-bellum coastal Ireland, in a small town, it centers on the relationships of and among five female characters, each written as a different archetype. Conflict between between social norms and personal fulfillment is one of the primary themes, along with insecurity and independence. The cast playing them do a good overall job of bringing to life women who are both strong and vulnerable. I thought Dererca Lynch and Aileen Kelly were particularly outstanding as Christina and Maggie Mundy, respectively.

Among the male characters, my favorite was Father Jack, and not just for the creative writing. Hats off to Paul McMahon for a great performance.

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