Festivals

Our Few and Evil Days – Abbey Theatre – Review

Our Few and Evil Days_new

Our Few and Evil Days | Abbey Theatre | Sept 26 – Oct 11

A young man arrives at a house and is met by an older couple. It becomes clear that he is dating their daughter, who has not arrived yet. This is the first time they will have dinner together and so the awkward conversation begins as they start to interrogate him. He’s studying at Trinity college and working in a pub at night. This seems like a glimpse into a typical suburban household, but this home is very different. This family have a hidden past that continues to control them to this day.

This is a new play by Mark O’Rowe and his first since Terminus in 2007. It is quite a departure from this previous work and leaves behind the criminal world for a more suburban tale. The main comparison is a supernatural element which is treated in a subtle, slow moving fashion.

The most startling thing when you enter the space in the Abbey is the size of the set. It pushes out into the auditorium, and takes the first few rows of the theatre with it. It is a suburban house, recreated in such detail that they could rent it out when the space is not in use.

The cast are very impressive with the two older members, Sinéad Cusack and Ciarán Hinds, worth the price of admission alone. Tom Vaughan-Lawlor plays a part so far removed from his on screen role in Love/ Hate, it’s hard to recognise this quiet and demure man as the same person.

There are a number of loose strands in the story which will annoy some viewers, and the supernatural elements will marginalise others, but the number of strong performances and the range of ideas on display mean that this is a cut above the average. While there are still some flaws, it is remarkable at times and quite blood curdling.

Our Few and Evil Days | Abbey Theatre | Sept 26 – Oct 11

Credits –
Ian-Lloyd Anderson – Gary
Sinéad Cusack – Margaret
Ciarán Hinds – Michael
Charlie Murphy – Adele
Tom Vaughan-Lawlor – Dennis
Mark O’Rowe – Written and Directed
Paul Wills – Set Design
Paul Keogan – Lighting Design
Catherine Fay – Costume Design
Philip Stewart – Music
Seán Mac Erlaine – Music by Philip Stewart featuring
Maisie Lee – Assistant Director

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