Monday, January 6, 2014

ThereIsBear!, 'Terminus': Devil May Care

Smock Alley Theatre
Jan 6-9

I've written a lot here in the last week so it's left me with a lot of things to catch up on. Unfortunately, this means I can't do a full review of ThereIsBear!'s production of Terminus by Mark O'Rowe. 

ThereIsBear! is a company formed in 2012 by members of NUI Galway's Drama Society. The last play they performed in this venue was the witch drama The Last Burning by Patrick Galvin. It was a good production but it carried the student drama trademark of a cast in their early-20s playing characters who are much older.

This production of Terminus, with a more age-appropriate cast, marks a more mature venture into professional drama.

Director Emmet Byrne's seemingly spare vision of O'Rowe's wicked play about three individuals pulled into Dublin's satanic underworld proves itself intricately detailed in his actor's skilful performances. Of particular note is Jed Murray, who makes the strongest connection with the audience (and who gets to show a more mindful. charming side than the aggressive roles he plays in ANU Productions' work). 

It's amazing how, in lieu of scenic action, O'Rowe's singing, mystical, eye-gouging script can captivate the audience. It's enough to get you excited about his upcoming adaptations of Shakespeare.

But the darkly operatic tales of Terminus are finely measured and conducted here by the ThereIsBear! company. If there's a show to see in town this week, it's this one. 

What did everybody else think?

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