An Hour with the Irish

Globe Theatre, 104 London St, Dunedin

29/06/2018 - 01/07/2018

Production Details

writer Emer Lyons

An Hour with the Irish

The second in the winter short play series is a triple bill. We are delighted to present a short work by Dunedin writer and actor Emer Lyons, The Green. This play, about the personal politics of a small village in modern Ireland was workshopped in 2017 at the Fortune as part of its 4×4 emerging playwright’s initiative. It will be directed by Martin Swann.

The second play of the night is an early 20th century classic, John Synge’s exquisite and poignant portrayal of love, loss, stoicism and tragedy.

Riders to the Sea

This will be directed by Louise Petherbridge and it is a rare opportunity to see a work by one of Ireland’s great dramatists.

The programme will also feature Kathryn Olcott’s Irish Beat Dancers.

This is the first time this dance group has appeared at The Globe and we are delighted to have them. The jigs, slip-jigs, hornpipes and step dance performed to both modern and traditional music will be toe-tapping.


Friday 29 June and Saturday 30 June 7.30pm and Sunday 1 July 2pm

Tickets are only $15 for general admission, $10 for members, students and seniors

Bookings are open on the website or phone 03 477 3274

The Green by Emer Lyons
Directed by Martin Swann
Cornelia Ruth Wheeler
Doris Sandy Cleary
Toby Richard Huber
Peter Emmett Hardie
Tanya Elsa May

Kathryn Olcott’s Irish Beat Dancers
Arranged by Kathryn Olcott
Kathryn Olcott
Alice Freeman
Kate Truman
Hannah Horton
Emma Davis
Lucy Davidson

Riders to the Sea by John Synge
Directed by Louise Petherbridge
Maurya Terry MacTavish
Cathleen Rosie Dunn
Nora Orla Dick
Bartley Reuben Hilder
Villagers Emmett Hardie, Richard Huber, Yvonne Jessop

Production Crew
Stage Manager Jamie Byas
Sound Design (The Green) Martin Swann
Sound Design (Riders) Louise Petherbridge
Sound Design (Irish Beat) Kathryn Olcott
Lighting Design Brian Byas
Technical Operator Brian Byas
Stage Set Ray Fleury
Wardrobe (Riders) Sofie Welvaert/Terry MacTavish
Front of House Manager Leanne Byas

Theatre ,

60 minutes

Earnestly humorous and deeply moving

Review by Mike Crowl 30th Jun 2018

Two contrasting plays, one a comedy, the other a tragedy, one written in 2016, the other first performed in 1904. Both have a strong woman at their centre, and both women have an obsession.

In The Green, Cornelia (Ruth Wheeler) is obsessed with the large lawn in the front of her house. She wants it to be perfect, so that she can win the prize in the Tidiest Town Competition. But everything stands in her way. Her husband, her neighbours and, even worse, the Travellers (no longer allowed to be called Tinkers). She’s convinced the latter are intending to invade the town and park on her grass.

There’s humour in the play, but somehow things come across as a bit too earnest, and the audience doesn’t provide the laughs needed. This is a pity, because the cast is good – and, importantly, handle the Irish accents well.

Sandy Cleary, Richard Huber and Emmett Hardie play the remaining roles, with a short appearance by Elsa May as the woman who’s won the coveted prize for the last ten years.

The production of Riders to the Sea captures the play’s unusual quality beautifully. The cast handle the poetic dialogue well, allowing the phrases to linger and sing. They’re also confident with letting silence have its place.

Terry McTavish plays Maurya, an old woman who’s lost her husband and her husband’s father as well as five sons. The sixth son (Reuben Hilder) makes a brief but strong appearance in the play before departing for a boat. His mother is grieving so strongly for her favourite, Michael, who has recently gone missing at sea, that she’s unable to offer her last son a blessing.

The two daughters, beautifully played by Rosie Dunn and Orla Dick, provide the backbone of the play. They’re grieving too, but they remain resolute and hopeful in the face of their mother’s obsessive despair.

This is a deeply moving production, though it’s difficult to empathise completely with the fatalistic aspects of Maurya’s character.

Between the two plays Kathryn Olcott’s Irish Beat Dancers perform several dances with great energy.

I am a bit puzzled by the music provided prior to Riders to the Sea. Its jauntiness, which suits the comedy, is very much out of sync with the tone of the tragedy.


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