Music and Reviews from Clare, Limerick, Waterford and sometimes further afield

Monday, October 5, 2015

Music and the Dramatic Arc

It has been a busy week.of teaching, playing and  one in which I became enamoured again with theatre after years of indifference.

On Wednesday I happened across the press night of a new Abbey production of Sophocles' Oedipus. Given a choice, undiluted
Greek drama would not be high on my must see list but I had heard good things about the composer Tom Lane and there was a irresistable opening night buzz leaking out onto Marlborough Street on a balmy evening on the last day of September. The drama was simply told in a Spartan brightly lit set. Denizens of McCoys Bar familiar to viewers of Fair City peopled the Greek chorus. The demands of Tom Lane's scoring made stiff demands on the vocal abilities of the chorus who rose remarkably well to the challenges. It is years since I was at the Abbey main stage and I was pleasantly surprised at the results of renovations which have transformed the interior  and the acoustic was excellent. Afterwards, the upstairs bar was full of the great and good of the theatrical and political world.  There was some consternation among some theatre
goers at the straying into semi operatic territory but as Tom Lane reminded me, opera was conceived as  an attempt at riviving Greek drama. The sung choruses combining modern and Renaissance elements added interest and help carried the dramatic arc.

Another production that benefitted from a live musical input was Decadent Theatre Company's touring production of Vernon God Little seen at Garter Lane , Waterford. The Lifebuoys, an excellent trio with employing vocals, guitar, mandolin, beat box and bass were a sort of meolodic glue that made the whole production  stick together. How lovely too to see Little John Nee back on a Waterford stage. Little John was last here with his solo show Sparkplug.

Related posts

Sparkplug at Central Hall

Thebans at the ENO Coliseum

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