The Curse of the Button Accordion – Smock Alley – Review


The Curse of the Button Accordion – Smock Alley – Review

Tues 23 / Wed 24 Feb @ 9pm | The Main Space

Sharon is a young girl obsessed with the normal things, such as the predictions of Nostradamus and the end of the World! She is worried that she cannot see her future. She has no dreams or expectations of her future life. That is until she hears something beautiful on the radio, the sound of a Button Accordion. After months of nagging she is eventually given an accordion all of her own. She develops a strong bond with her accordion, calling it Frank and taking it everywhere with her! It is only later she starts to see the signs that something is not quite right with this accordion. Strange events happen in its presence and she starts to believe the accordion may be cursed!

This is a new play written and performed by Sharon Mannion. Sharon is known as a comedian and has worked on TV on shows such as ‘Moone Boy’ and the ‘Republic of Telly’. Possibly of more relevance, she has also worked as a stand up comedian for many years and is well used to the stage. The play draws on her own childhood, growing up in Roscommon and learning to play an instrument that stopped being cool a long time ago.

For anyone forced to play an instrument during their childhood, this will bring back many awkward memories. With only a tin whistle and an accordion on stage, Sharon manages to recreate her childhood years. We get to meet her over zealous Mother, ex-showband Father along with the local priest, teachers, friends and classmates. Sequences where she describes her music teacher and the local youth Trad band (like the Corrs but with more Jims) are among the funniest. While this is part of the Scene and Heard Festival which is aimed at incubating new work, this production seems to be almost the finished article, other than for an ending that lacked sparkle. This play verges on being stand up, with a number of laugh out loud moments over its short duration. As a vehicle for Sharon to show her ability, it works very well and she seems a natural with an audience. Sharon exposes her flaws and foibles in this heart warming tale of a wide-eyed girl in small town Ireland.

Part of Smock Allies: Scene & Heard Festival  I  February 17th – March 5th  I  Smock Alley Theatre
Written and Performed by Comedian Sharon Mannion

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