The Druid Theatre Company production, which is directed by Mikel Murfi, had its premiere in Galway in 2006, and has since won a Fringe First when it debuted at Edinburgh last year. The dark comedy stars Garrett Lombard and Tadhg Murphy as two brothers living in a dingy and run down flat near Elephant and Castle with their overbearing father Dinny, played by Denis Conway. Mercy Ojelade completes the cast as the supermarket worker, Hayley.
Walsh’s other plays include Disco Pigs, which appeared at the Tishel Arts Centre in Cork in 1996 and was turned into a film of the same name in 2001, and Chatroom, which first appeared at the National’s Cottesloe Theatre in 2005. Walsh’s second movie, Hunger which was co-written with director Steve McQueen, won the Camera d\'Or prize at Cannes this year and is set to be released in the UK this autumn. Lighting design is from Paul Keogan and set design from Sabine Dargent.
Critics disagreed about the success of Walsh’s play. While the majority applauded the “compelling, uncomfortable work” and the “frightening energy pumping through this writing”, some critics expressed concerns about a lack of emotional depth or revelation in Walsh’s “traumatised characters”. The actors were more succesful, being almost invariably praised, while Sabine Dargent’s design was felt to be a suitably “grotty mess”. Many felt that Mikel Murfi\'s direction was “brilliant”, although Nicholas de Jongh, who stood out for his apparent diapointment in the play in general, felt that it was “chronically boisterous”.
- by Kate Jackson
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