At the preview of Tom Murphy's The House last night and all in all a very fine production.
Abbey story summary: " Summer time, 1950s Ireland. Emigrants are returning home for their annual visit. While some just want to prop up the local bars, Christy Cavanagh has something more in mind. His first call is to the house of Mrs. de Burca and her three daughters, the place he thinks of as home. When he discovers the place is up for sale, he feels he must take action or face being totally cut adrift."
Declan Conlon who plays the male lead Christy is excellent as is Eleanor Methven, the mother, but the whole cast is strong in performing what is a comic and tragic story of 1950s Ireland dealing with its returning emigrants and their own sense of displacement.
The sets are very well engineered, turning on two circles to provide three scenes of the big house, the local pub and the solicitors home, all accompanied by evocative and sometimes haunting background music.
It was a very long first half, one and a half hours, but the second half brought all the loose ends quickly to conclusion and the closing scene of Christy's gain but at what price left the theatre momentarily silenced, to be followed by strong applause.
Wednesday 13 June – Saturday 14 July http://www.theabbey.ie/