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"What Happened in Boston, Willie"

Reviews of Current Productions

note: entire contents copyright 1999 by Larry Stark


"At The Black Pig's Dyke"

by Vincent Woods
Directed by Carmel O'Reilly
Choreography by Susan Dibble
Irish Dance by Ger Cooney

Set/Masks/Costumes Design by Mick Spence
Costumes/Masks Co-Design by Marcella Grogan
Lighting Design by Marc Klureza
Properties Design by Marjorie Galas
Sound Design by Katrina Owen
Stage Manager Brenda Morris

Lizzie Boles................................Carmel O'Reilly
Young Lizzie/Sarah Boles/Elizabeth.....Irene Daly
Tom Fool.....................................George Aulnier
Miss Funny...............................Karen Woodward
Jack Boles/First Hero.................Ciaran Crawford
Michael Flynn/Captain Mummer...........Sid Quilty
Frank Beirne/Doctor..........................Bill Meleady
Hugh Brolly/Second Hero.............Douglas Rainey
Beelzebub......................................Deidre Lenihan
Butcher...................................Maureen I. Lenihan


Seven year ago it was this play was first made, in a country where sayin "Vengeance is an endless road" was ta be a prophet wailin in the wilderness; for there was a line dug across men's hearts atween Orange and Green, and there was no Mo Mullen buildin bridges acrosst it. For the gift and the curse of bein Irish is that ye can forget Nothing, ever. So thank God for the Mummers, who can say the sorry truth and make ya laugh, though yer tears yet be wet at their rhyming.

The Mummers sing new rhymes to old tunes, give old plots a new twist, and under their haystack masks there is step-dance and morrising and even a quack doctor can raise a dead hero. Yet under their reedy weeds are the men of the next farm, with their grudges and yearnings still unfulfilled, and as their fooleries stretch back through ritualed centuries, so Vincent Woods stretches a sad women's tale back through three generations of wedding for love men wedded as well to factions and cudgels and guns, till their only song is a dirge.

As The Hero wearing orange fights The Hero wearing green till a wooden sword pinned neath an arm mimes victory and death, the women raise their daughters husbandless and speak in still small voices about loss. And the only hope of this blood-soaked land is that one day their myth will be retold with hope as its last line.

It is the job of the reviewer to tell the truth of what he sees; and the trick, as I have learned, is not to refuse the laughing, nor the tears, but to blink and blink and blink to see through them clearly, though they trickle out the ends of your beard.

I think you should see this play.

Love,
===Anon.


"At The Black Pig's Dyke" (till 10 April)
SUGAN THEATRE COMPANY
Boston Center for The Arts, 539 Tremont Street, BOSTON
1(617)426-0320

THE THEATER MIRROR, New England's LIVE Theater Guide

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