Both my favourite cities in one wonderful theatrical weekend . . .
We've now come to the end of our amazing Brian Friel season at the Crucible in Sheffield.
Three very different but stunning plays - Afterplay, Translations and Wonderful Tennessee and the best ever play readings in the studio of 'LIving Quarters', 'The Communication Cord' and 'Fathers and Sons'. All read sublimely by the actors from the three main plays. The Communication Cord, in particular, was a totally hilarious farce set in Donegal and I have rarely laughed out loud so much. The readings have been a brilliant experience - only downside is just getting the first Act of each play and gagging for more!
The stage sets have been incredible - but cos you're not allowed to take pictures in the theatre I can only describe them, but for Afterplay in the Studio, the set consisted of loads of old fashioned huge mirrors, so evocotive of the old cafes of Europe. Translations, in the main auditorium at the Crucible, had a beautiful reconstrucion of an old Irish farmhouse in Ballybeg - loads of detail and great stone steps up the side of the barn. Wonderful Tennessee is set entirely on a quayside in Donegal, as the boat to take them to the island doesn't turn up - and the huge stone quay was brilliantly built, jutting into the auditorium of the Lyceum at a jaunty angle, taking up the first 3 rows of seating. The bright daylight reflections felt like you really were at the seaside on the wonderful west coast of Donegal with the cast basking in that light you only get near the sea.
So next day it was over the Pennines to Liverpool for the "Lights Up" parade and opening day of the wonderful new Everyman Theatre. And if you click on that link just now "Everyman Lights Up" you don't even have to plough through all my photos really - cos the video clip on that webpage is a marvellous 5 minute encapsulation of an amazing two days. Take a few minutes to see it!!!!
The excitement started in Williamson Square, outside the Playhouse . . .
OFF WE GO . . . .
and Bold Street
up Leece Street, Rodney Street and finally Mount Pleasant to the edge of Hope Street and our first glimpse in the dark of the new theatre.
The music and the beat of the many drums in the dark was so like our carnival experience round the dark streets of Ouro Preto all those years ago
This is the 'Dear Everyman' video featuring actors old and new and very moving - you can see it on the Dear Everyman webpage or below
Hope you watched the Everyman video - short, sweet and with a soundtrack
That was the best theatre to theatre, city to city weekend ever!!!