Robert Sheehan, star of TV comedy Misfits, makes his professional stage debut alongside old-hands Niamh Cusack and Ruth Negga in the Old Vic's Playboy of the Western World this autumn and we at Whatsonstage.com couldn't resist an Outing with our members to see this new adaptation of J M Synge's dark comedy.

And so last night (21 September), 140 of us - with drinks and programmes in hand - settled into our seats for a rather bizarre Irish tale of lonely dreamer Christy Mahon (Sheehan) who takes refuge in Michael Flaherty’s pub, claiming that he has killed his oppressive father. He charms the village women including Widow Quinn (Cusack) and captures the heart of the landlord’s fiery daughter Pegeen (Negga), becoming an instant hero.

It turns out however that his story isn't quite what it seems and the villagers fascination with violence takes tangible form. In true Irish tradition this play has you laugh in surprise at the plot turns and the strange mix of characters while the Irish accents, all well-tuned place you firmly in this small Irish backwater. The set is also very impressive with a revolving stage and stone wall pub and the musical interludes provided by the cast are entertaining keeping the mood light throughout.

As always, please feel free to email your comments and thoughts about the play, as well as any of your favourite insights from last night to feedback@whatsonstage.com. We would love to hear from you.

Laura Norman
Club Manager