John McCullagh April 23, 2004

Tinderbox is the only local drama touring company ever to bother to grace us with their presence and by virtue of that alone, deserves our support.  I am confident that this new play by Michael Duke, ‘Revenge’ is worth seeing.  I suppose it is unfortunate that Newry Town Hall is booked at the moment for the Feis, causing this drama to be staged instead in the less-suitable Warrenpoint Town Hall [the same reason that the All-Ireland Confined Amateur Drama Finals also went to Warrenpoint]. 

{Yes I know the Feis is popular, long-running etc. but it’s also eminently suited to Warrenpoint Town Hall, as these others are not!  Also schoolchildren and parents would relish the trip to ‘The Point’ and so their participation – and the all-important memory of the occasion – would actually be enhanced! }

Why the problem?  Well, Revenge is an epic story of love and loss, played out on a spectacular scale.  A bold, theatrically vivid production, it is performed by a fourteen-strong professional cast alongside community choruses.  See the professionals this Monday night and the amateurs all next week.  A crash course in learning to be a theatre critic!

The story?  It’s Halloween night when the worlds of the living and the dead meet.  And it’s the last night for one young couple before their long-awaited wedding.  Even as they stand on the threshold of this new life together, the shadows of absent friends return to engulf them.  Before the night is over, there are vows of remembrance and vengeance that must finally be settled.

The tour is presented with support from the Victims Strategy Implementation Fund, a venture itself worthy of support.  I know I’m asking a lot recently even of drama enthusiasts like myself, but it’s a long time till this time next year – when such choice comes round again.  Give it a birl!

Monday 19 April – One Night Only – 8 p.m. Warrenpoint Town Hall

Happy to report [Mon night] that Revenge was well-attended and well-played.  Local girl Gemma Burns, as Mae, on her first professional appearance excelled.

The play itself is dark, psychological and disturbing.  Not, in my opinion, to be recommended for ‘victims’ – the group it especially portrays. 

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