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Trainspotting Review: Kilkenny Advertiser

Trainspotting Review: Kilkenny Advertiser

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Here’s our first press review for TRAINSPOTTING. It was published in John Cleere’s ‘Cleere Thinking’ column in the June 26th edition of the Kilkenny Advertiser.

TRAINSPOTTING AT THE WATERGATE THEATRE

Have you ever watched the high wire act at the circus? Part of the fascination is wondering will someone slip and crash to the ground.

The Devious Theatre Company took the high wire this week when they tackled Irvine Welsh’s ‘Trainspotting’. This was risky stuff, the film is familiar to the mainly young audience, so they needed to bring something fresh to their stage adaptation.

I’m glad to say there are no shattered bones or broken artistic reputations to report. For anyone unfamiliar with the book or film, this is the story of a bunch pretty hopeless cases living very close to, if not completely over, the edge in Edinburgh. This isn’t the Edinburgh seen by visitors to the arts festival or rugby internationals. We are down in the underbelly where unemployment, alcohol and heroin are boss.

So, in a week that the country has been officially declared to be in a recession, is this the type of show that we really need? Actually I think it is. Along with a dose of reality there are plenty of laughs, especially once you come to terms with the near perfect Scottish accents.

The play has a cast of 11, some playing multiple roles. This is a big undertaking, but the company use two directors, Niamh Moroney and John Morton, to knock it into shape. I caught the opening night where there were just a couple of slow moments, but this should be ironed out by now.

With such a large cast it’s probably unfair to single out any individual performance, but in this case Ross Costigan deserves special mention. He is on stage for most of the show and you just know that this is the part he always wanted as he makes his journey through the hell of heroin addiction and back out again.

By the way, if you are easily offended this is probably not the play for you, although thousands of people seem to have no problem guffawing away to much more distasteful material from Tommy Tiernan.

Earlier in the day I attended the AGM of Kilkenny Tourism where the County Manager, Joe Crockett, outlined the importance of arts and culture to the future of Kilkenny. The Devious Theatre could be as important to Kilkenny as Druid Theatre have been to Galway or Red Kettle to Waterford, given the proper encouragement and support.

‘Trainspotting’ continues at The Watergate until Saturday June 28. ‘Not to be missed’, as the reviewers love to say.

JOHN CLEERE

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