successfully exploit all the comic material ofthe Don Juan legend — especiallly in the seduction of a young and naive peasant girl. played in a coy yokel accent by Caroline Preller. The atheistic philosophy which underlies Don Juan‘s endless pursuit of women is also developed well. mainly through an excellent performance by David Phillips as Don Juan‘s valet Sganerelle. Phillips acts with a despairing charm and is hilarious as a commentator on his master's sexual adventures.
At times the play seems to lack pace. Mostly though the cast deal amiably and conventionally with what is a difficult and ambitious script. This kind ofthing 0 clearly isn‘t going to be at the top of your average Fringe punter‘s list but is still worthy ofattention. (Luke Harding)
I Don Juan (Fringe) Cambridge Prism Theatre Group, The Arter Theatre, Broughton St (Venue 101). 557 1785, until 26 Aug, 2.10pm,£3 (£2).
THE BAIN OF CUCHULAIN
Yeats‘ drama is certainly not the most accessible sort of theatre; it is experimental and problematic, and it comes shrouded in verse poetry that is out of fashion at the Fringe. Which is why Blood and Mire's performance of two of Yeats‘ plays, A! The Hawk '5 Well and On Bailes Strand from the Cuchulain cycle is ambitious, engrossing and a cut above other Fringe drama.
What distinguishes this piece. is not so much the acting as the speaking of Yeats' poetry. The intensity of the tragic life and death of Cuchulain, which is all over in an hour, is unlocked by the power and economy of the word, and in this respect the play has many similarities to Shakespeare’s work.
The young company manage to ﬁnd the key to Yeats' verse, particularly the arrogant, strutting
Cuchulain and the old man by the well, and create for the audience the Celtic world of kings and witches, of legend and magic. They combine. with the richness of the text, Irish music played on penny whistle, pan-pipes and bodrum by Mike Taylor of Incantations and
a slow hawk‘s dance by Sue Hawksley ofBallet Rambert.
There are weak moments, but not too many, and although this sort of play is not to everyone‘s taste, those who enjoy verse drama or Irish myth should see it. (Nicola Robertson)
I The Gain of Cuchulain (Fringe) Blood and Mire, Tic Toe at Marco‘s (Venue 98) Until 26 Aug, 6.15pm.£4(£3.5()).
BOY WITH A CART l
Christopher Fry‘s Boy With A Cart tells of St Cuthman, a headstrong shepherd boy who on his father’s death drags his mother around the countryside in a cart until it breaks. On that spot . after a few deft miracles from God he builds a I church. This likely tale is . performed with much I honesty if a little |
breathlesst by Newcastle University Theatre Society. Separation ofthe telling of the tale from Fry‘s very fine poetry using audio techniques is successful — however the attempt to reﬂect Fry‘s enormous reverence for his natural environment by presenting a slide show simultaneoust produces overtones of The World About Us although it serves to remind us ofour current abuse. (Lisa Baraitser)
I Boy Willi A Cart (Fringe) Newcastle University Theatre Society. Cathedral Church of St Mary the Virgin (Venue 91),2256293. 17.18.21. 24, 25 Aug, 3pm,£3.50 (£2.50).
IIIIIIIIIIIII EXIT THE KING
The performance is interspersed with a series of set-piece movements to music, ceremonies which seem to represent a fragile shoring-up of the old ordered world against imminent chaos and collapse. They are one of the most satisfying parts of this production of Ionesco‘s Exit the King, the story of King Berenger‘s ﬁnal, frightened hour-and-a-half.
He is a pathetic ﬁgure - a
l l !
mix of Faustus, Lear and
lastly Christ — who must die, it seems, for no better reason than that the world is tired of him. Unfortunately. the cast often seemed tired too. Their performances were lacklustre, always promising to provide the heights oftension and despair deserved by the script, but never quite paying out.
There were moments when a sense ofmystery did come through. as carefully orchestrated voices cut through a chilling silence — moments which increased as the play approached its end. But overall this is no more than an averagely competent production; (Matt Barrell)
I Exit the King (Fringe) lncompany Theatre, Marco‘s Leisure Centre (Venue 98). 229 7898. until 2 Sept, 2pm.£3.50
A moment of revelation. This is what the Fringe is about. A bar converted into a theatre, pillars obscuring the view, a set consisting ofthe mandatory black flats and high table, and a dated play by the master ofthe slightly intelligent sterile British sit-com. The Lover is well acted, iftendinga little bit too much towards the beautiful-person-of- Camden-Town-style. Nick Cave (not ofBad Seed fame, it appears) flitted believably between the Terry Scott character of the city-yup Richard and the jeans commercial persona ofthe adulterer, while Sophie Mowat, as Sarah, was sumptuous throughout. Astonishingly, the production played to a full house. I congratulate the company on their
- ‘ ON THE
You may claim as many different offers as you wish, but please take the whole magazine with you each time. All offers are strictly subject to availability and the individual managements’ decisions are final. Only one ticket ofth for each voucher. First come, first served. Enjoy the show/\f
6‘ , :‘ffvuo \fifs
A free pair oitickets to see LES BUBB on Monday 28 Aug (3pm). Exchange this voucher at Theatre
‘, Workshop Box Ofice. Up to 5 pairs of tickets 4 , 6 available. R p \N . JUDY “BOOB JUDY PASCOE pRESENTS A pair of free tickets to see Judy Pasco on Sunday 27
Aug at 8pm. Exchange this voucher at the Gilded Balloon Box Office. Up to 3 pairs of tickets available
AGAINST ALL 6008 iorthis performance.
A pair of free tickets to see KINGDOM COME on Fri 25 - ‘ Aug at 3pm. Exchange this voucher at the Gilded
Balloon Box Office. Up to 3 pairs oi tickets available for this performance.
A pair of free tickets to see SEAN CORCORAN AND
ﬁg” “90°” PHYLLIS HOLT PRESENT on Tue 29 Aug at 9pm. E A T RME Exchange this voucher at the Gilded Balloon Box ,— Oifice. Upt03 pairs oitickets availableiorthis
A pair of free tickets to see ARCHAOS on Tue 29 Aug at 8.30pm. Exchange this voucher at The Venue Box Office. Up to 5 pairs of tickets available for this performance.
ACTUAUSTRATHCLYDE TASTE or HONEY
A pair of free tickets to see A TASTE OF HONEY on Sun 27 Aug. With each Freeloader pair of tickets
picked up, Methuen are giving away a copy of the play to celebrate their 100th anniversary! Up to 4 pairs of tickets available. Exchange this voucher a the Gilded Balloon Theatre Box Office.
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The List 25 — 31 August 1989 33