Oscar Wilde, The Grand Daughter, The Trees and The Hunger.

Last night was the first time I had been out to the theatre for ages so I feel I actually have something to blog about. Recently, I have been taking refuge in my living room with my books, Ted Lasso and The Morning Show, and doing very little writing. I haven’t been out and about much, except for hobbling around on a stick on the Farnham Estate with Poppins and getting drenched in the rain. I’ve enjoyed the odd swim in the freezing outdoor pool (it didn’t matter about getting wet there) and sprawl in the steam room after the cool of the outside.

However, last night, I enjoyed the trip to the theatre. I went to see ‘Work Is the Curse Of the Drinking Classes ‘. by Neil Titley with local man, Will Govan, playing the role of Oscar Wilde. I think Will Govan was extraordinarily brave to take on the role as it must have been difficult to maintain the tension between the ‘drunken’ character while at the same time portraying the writer/socialite who was so intense, complicated and clever. And Will had so few props which I’m sure would have been an anathema to Oscar Wilde himself.

Will Govan certainly has the stature and presence that I equate with Oscar Wilde, so it was a joy to watch him in action at Cavan Town Hall, and, with such a bare Parisian set, he really had to carry the audience alone. I think, he mainly succeeded. At the start, I was impressed with how he captured and conveyed the ‘inebriation’ of the character. He managed to articulate the ‘slurred’ words yet still annunciate the script. I’m not sure, however, that he retained this at the end, when the language and monologue became more intense. Somehow the pathos of the Oscar character became more two dimensional.

Aside from the last ten minutes, I thought Will’s performance was good. However, I would like to have seen him come back on stage and take a proper bow, with a smile. I felt he ran off and hid. I’m not sure Oscar Wilde would have liked that.

Aside from the theatre, I’ve been getting to know my glorious granddaughter, Aine, so have been up and down to Dublin a good bit. Last week I watched Roisin take her to a swimming class. Gosh, it’s all so different from when I was a young mother. When I took Roisin into the public pool as a baby, over thirty years ago, it was just me and her and the rest of the people, splashing and dive bombing about! This was an actual class for the mothers and babies. I was sitting behind the glass, watching them do all sorts of dolphin tricks. Actually, to be honest, I didn’t see too much because the damned tears were coursing down my cheeks!

Finally, the reading. I have read loads of books since Christmas, but I loved The Trees by Percival Everett which addressed racism in America with humour, panache and hard hitting honesty. He writes a ‘murder mystery’ and through this shows the truth about the thousands of lynchings and murders of black Americans that has taken place over the years. Also, I have just finished The Hunger by Ross Raison. It’s a grim read about dementia and shows how women are easily manipulated by their families and loved ones. The protagonist is chef so there are also wonderful kitchen scenes. Its deftly written, and though grim, it’s a very good read.

So…I’m waiting on the hip operation and after that, life will begin again!


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