Saturday, November 13, 2010

Medea, the Senior Play

Peter McCarthy's Senior Play production of the Greek tragedy Medea, by Euripides, gave a clear hard focus on the elemental nature of this horrifying play, especially through the language and the narrative itself. The actors deserve great credit for their work in conveying this vision of horror, and absorbing the audience completely during the 90 minutes.

Opeline Kellett's powerful performance in the title role was extremely impressive. Her Medea was a woman of still and steely determination, not a character to be crossed, as seen particularly in the exchanges with Robin Fitzpatrick's smug complacent Jason ('women should not exist'). Emma Moore and Shannen Keogan as Dirce and Evadne each worked effectively in voicing reactions to Medea's awful plans.

Other significant parts were taken by Igor Verkhovskiy (Creon) and Robbie Hollis (Aegeus), both of whom made the most of their scenes with Medea, and Olivia Plunket, whose played the Nurse with great clarity, being particularly compelling in scenes at the start and end of the play. Tamara Hoskyns-Abrahall in her first performance on the Columban stage as the teacher was another to speak the lines convincingly, and Samuel and John Clarke (who didn't have any lines to speak) demonstrated their own acting abilities as the doomed children in their reactions to the demented adult world around them.

As the programme said, Medea 'remains a relevant commentary on love, hate, religion, betrayal and revenge in the relationships between men and women', and this production justified entirely those words. Well done to all involved.

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