They Called Her Vivaldi – Abbey Theatre (Peacock) – Review

They Called Her Vivaldi – Abbey Theatre (Peacock) – Review

Dates: 30 November – 23 December On the Peacock Stage

Photos by Ros Kavanagh

Cecilia Maria (Genevieve Hulme-Beaman) has a magical hat. Her father Edward M. Haberdasher (Louis Lovett) gave it to her and it allows her to carry out an amazing feat. She can look inside the soul of any individual and write their song, a particular piece of music that is unique to them! People travel from far and wide to see her and to hear her wonderful music. One day, however, a strange man arrives in her shop with nefarious designs on her hat!

This is a piece aimed at younger members of the theatre going public. It is the work of Theatre Lovett and was written by and stars Louis Lovett. Genevieve Hulme-Beaman plays the main character Cecilia Maria and Louis Lovett plays all the other various characters in the world. We get to meet pizza makers and hair dressers, gondoliers and cat burglars along with a variety of other unusual folk. Lovett is highly skilled at mime and uses the techniques with ease. Hulme-Beaman is a willing foil for Lovett and plays her young character with wide-eyed innocence.

The play is set in the fictional city of Triste, which bears remarkable similarities to Venice. The set has a number of candy striped mooring poles jutting out of the water to create the canals. There is a small counter for the shop where Cecilia Maria works and the rest is left to the imagination.

Despite being on at Christmas this is not a Panto. It does not contain any of the over the top madness associated with that particular art form. This production has been touring for a number of months before finding a home in the Peacock, so it is not even very Christmassy. It is, however, set in a fantastic world filled with quirky characters that will put a smile on many a face.

This would probably not be suitable for smaller kids, as it does not contain the usual slap stick comedy or obvious goodies and baddies. It is aimed at a more precocious pre-teen market who enjoy witty word play and a variety of other visual gags. Fans of Roald Dahl will no doubt enjoy. It is an easy watch for parents also and has many jokes that sail right over the head of the younger audience members. This is a sharp and well written piece that while being aimed at kids is an easy and enjoyable watch for all.


Times: Tues, 10.15am & 12.15pm
Wed – Fri, 7pm
Sat, 3pm & 7pm

Running Time: 1 hour

Tickets: €16 – €18 / Conc. €14 – €16
Child: €10 – €12
Family of 4: €44

Cast: Genevieve Hulme-Beaman
Cast: Louis Lovett
Writer: Louis Lovett
Co-directed by: Muireann Ahern and Carl Kennedy
Set and Lighting Designer: Zia Bergin-Holly
Composer: Carl Kennedy and Louis Lovett
Sound Designer: Carl Kennedy
Costume Designer: Liadain Kaminska and Muireann Ahern
Prop Maker and Scenic Artist: Molly O’Cathain
Producers: Muireann Ahern and Jeanine MacQuarrie

Categories: Header, Theatre, Theatre Review

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