Monday, September 16, 2013

A Skull in Connemara, A Play You will “Dig”

A Skull in Connemara
Presented by
The Pittsburgh Irish Classical Theatre
September 12-28, 2013
Directed by Martin Giles
A Play You will “Dig”
Reviewer, JoAnn R. Forrester

The play, A Skull in Connemara, written by the prolific and brilliant Martin McDonagh focuses on the gruesome practice of grave exhumation in a small town.   A practice, that for many of us,   seems  unreal and something made up  from a  CSI crime show.  In the play, due to overcrowding, the local cemetery located in a small Irish town of Leenane, exhumes bodies of those who have been buried there for over seven years and  disposes in a local lake.  Yes it is  gruesome…but this a marvelous  dark comedy filled with twists and turns.. It has wonderful examples of sarcastic word play, small town intrigue and insight to the character of the townspeople to keep one fascinated as the tale unfolds. 

If you are from a small town or rural area whether it is in Ireland, or any other small parcel of a town in the world, you will instantly recognize and appreciate the dark acts and antics going on.  People watching are the big dynamic in town.  You have a relative small group of people…bored…looking for gossip…something interesting to watch and speculate. Neighbor watching and trying to hide what “skullduggery” you are up to at the same time is the  game…the big entertainment. 


The play revolves around four main characters, Maryjohnny Rafferty( Sharon Brady) Mick Dowd (James Keegan), Thomas Hanlon (Jason McCune) and Marton Hanlon,  (Alec Silberblatt)  who are prime example of characters in a small town.  Mary John the town gossip and grudge score keeper, Mick, the man with a secret, Thomas, the self-
important police official and Alec the village incompetent with a nasty mouth are wonderfully portrayed and give excellent insight into “village life and secrets”.  Each person needs one another for companionship, for comfort, for relief of boredom, and yet each one has the need to poke and pinch at one another because of the need. 

Pittsburgh is blessed to have the Pittsburgh Irish Classical Theathre, an excellent repertory company, with a consistent record of   exceptionally high level of performance.  All those involved, director Martin Giles, the artistic staff are “Broadway quality”.

A special mention that Alan Stanford, is now the permanent Producing Artistic Director…a very wise choice.

Go and see A Skull in Connemara a play that you will dig.  Enjoy folks. Another high quality Production from PICT. 

Roving Pittsburgher Good News Reporter, JoAnn Forrester is the Host of "Empress of Biz, Reinvent in Rugged Times," a business Talkcast syndicated on PPLMag, Pittsburgh's First Internet Radio and TV Network.  You can hear JoAnn and Business friends every Thursday at 9 AM on the TalkShoe network or archived later at:  Jo Ann is also a regular business tip columnist at the Pittsburgh Business Times.

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