Boom? – Civic Theatre – Review by Frank L.
Written by Isabel Mahon
This is a revival of a situation comedy set in 2006 in Carrickmines when the Celtic Tiger was still hale and hearty but on the verge of collapse. That is why the question mark in the title is relevant. There are five female actors who have a great deal of theatrical, cinematic and television experience. The characters are Selma Mac (Isobel Mahon) in whose newly extended house the action takes place, her mother Carmel (Maria McDermott Roe), her sister Maeve (Karen Egan), her neighbour Chloe (Claudia Carroll) and her unlikely good friend Bernie (Rose Henderson).
The play begins with Selma Mac, in her house, doing some final preparations before a celebration which she has just about managed to pull together. Unfortunately, her mother arrives early intent to control the event. The plot soon reveals amongst the participants worrying mental health issues, drunken and philandering husbands, in vogue self-help caring platitudes and a variety of other topical issues.
These five actors interact well with each other as the jokes fly thick and fast. At all times the momentum of the piece is maintained as the five women expose their strengths and weaknesses. Notwithstanding the ten year gap since its creation the play remains a fine comic insight into the particular problems and issues which it depicts.
The well-drilled cast was entitled to the enthusiastic and generous applause with which the audience received the performance. On reflection afterwards and on a more worrying note that all important “?” in the title may also be portentous in relation to this 2017 revival given the current state of the world. However “Boom?” and its gentle insights, delivered with panache helps to distract its audience, for a while, from the unsettled world outside.
Claudia Carroll (Fair City)
Rose Henderson (Fair City, Father Ted)
Isobel Mahon (Glenroe, The Clinic)
Maria McDermottroe (Glenroe, Killinaskully)
By Isobel Mahon
Directed by Caroline FitzGerald
Duration: 105 mins. One interval