One Act Season – Irish Club

‘One Act Season – Irish Players’ was performed by the Irish Theatre Players back at their old haunt, the Irish Club in Townsend Road, Subiaco.
The season ran for four nights until Saturday 14th September with a 2.00 pm Sunday matinée on the 15th.
The two-hour show was made up of three short locally written plays.

The Set: for all three plays was a matte black room, with each show having its own furniture and props.
The stage manager was Caroline Duignan, with Shannon Murphy and Caroline McDonnell coordinating.
The lighting and sound technicians were Josie Hacking and John Spurling.

‘A Yearning for Home’ was written by Sean Byrne and directed by award winner, Dale James.

As Dan (Niall O’Toole) who has now retired, lowers himself gently into his armchair – his haemorrhoids are causing him grief – he announces to his tough but tolerant wife Mags (Marian Byrne) that he has looked into returning to the ’old country’, not just for a holiday but for good. Mags is less than thrilled!

A very well-structured play with a good, natural flowing dialogue. The director kept the action interesting and the pace moving. The cast were well rehearsed and had good natural rapport.

Caught Inside’ was written by Therese Edmonds and directed by Paul Taylor-Byrne.

                Now approaching middle age, Lochie (Michael Balmer) arrogantly recalls his youth and how he was king of the surf. The local bookshop owner, Chris (Vee McGuire) shows Lochie the latest surf book, but he decides not to buy it – it has no photo of him in it.

Lochie talks to his surfing friend Mick (Mark Tully) and his loved one, Kate (Hillary Readings) horrified at his exclusion. He turns to drink and on meeting Rowdy (Shivas Lindsay) has an epiphany.

A good and novel idea for a short play which sadly did not quite work for me. It was little repetitive and this where a good friend or an experienced director could advise on editing the script to be punchier. The acting was generally good, but I could not warm to the central character. I would like to see this modified and performed again sometime in the future

‘No Room to Party’ was written by Harry Davies and directed by Aidan Murphy.

                When attractive Sam (Jessica Warriner) meets cheerful Stephen (Mark Tilly) on the stairs, having been abandoned by her last lover Samantha thinks ‘love’ has returned. There is a constant flow of visitors through Stephen’s bedsit, frustrating their ardour.

Stephen has a strange mixture of friends including Louise (Maddy Breheny), Gav (Brian O’Donovan), Stinchcombe (Mark Ó Conchobhair) and Dirk (Mervin Young).

My comments for this play are very similar to the previous one. I love to see new talent. A new actor, a budding director even a first-time playwright, however not all on the same show. With so many characters trying to make a mark on the storyline the dialogue must be tight, the direction strong and well considered. The cast performed well but I kept losing the theme and direction of the story. There was however a great number of hilarious one-liners. Please don’t be too discouraged by my comments. Good luck with a rewrite.