REVIEW: THE WALWORTH FARCE Cottesloe

PUBLISHED: 15:51 09 October 2008 | UPDATED: 15:28 07 September 2010

Until November 29 Five star rating If it s farce you re looking for then you ve found it with this riotous tale of a father and sons re-enacting their Irish past in a south London council flat. But behind the hilarity you ll

THE WALWORTH FARCE

Cottesloe

Until November 29

Five star rating If it's farce you're looking for then you've found it with this riotous tale of a father and sons re-enacting their Irish past in a south London council flat.

But behind the hilarity you'll also find genuine tragedy in this new play by Enda Walsh.

With a routine as slick as his flat is filthy, Denis Conway's Dinny daily drills his sons through his fictionalised version of life in Cork. Sean (Tadhg Murphy), Blake (Garrett Lombard) and Dinny each take on a plethora of characters dredged up from the past: Vera, money-hungry, man-eating fox; Eileen Cotter, fancy woman; and Paddy, Dinny's poverty-stricken younger brother. The deft choreography is only thrown into disarray with blips in the routine - a giant sausage replacing the requisite roast chicken; Ryvita making a poor substitute for pan loaf.

But it is this desire for a routine that has suffocated and repressed these men. That is until the appearance of Hayley, the check-out assistant. Her customer-care training has not prepared her for what she finds 15 floors up and her unwitting intervention and its catastrophic impact throws this family's life, with all its horror and degradation, into sharp relief.

Druid theatre company's production is an ensemble piece with every aspect working to support this brave, ferocious, wonderful play that makes the grotesque sympathetic and humanises the raging, desperate fear of a family driven wild by its past.

Sara Thomas

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