Hubris by Ian Anthony Lawless at The Sean O’ Casey Theatre

The Collective Theatre Company

Cast-

Anthony : Ian Anthony
Kevin : Luke Collins
Kelly : Sorcha Kehoe
Jimmy : Adam Walsh
Luke : Chris Kelly
Conscience: Padraic Mc Guinley

 

“The play deals with complex themes including the mental trauma and dysfunction of a troubled youth and the denial of his self-destruction.
Hubris’, examines the all too real experience of gangland violence in Dublin’s inner city. An unfortunately relevant piece of work for the current climate, the drama focuses on the experience of the main character, Anthony, as he navigates life on the outside following a four-year stint in ‘the Joy’.
As the show progresses we are forced to re-examine our prejudices as the lines between bad and good become blurred. The overarching question of the show is universal, are fresh starts ever possible. ”

That’s the soundbite for this new production HUBRIS written by Ian Antony Lawless and directed by Angelene Milne 

 

And indeed it a good question. Can a man with so much baggage really make a new start?

The story revolves around Anthony (played by Ian Anthony) and his long-suffering wife Kelly (played by Sorcha Kehoe) who want to gather their lives together after Anthony comes out of jail but waiting in the long grass is his former employer, Jimmy (played expertly by Adam Walsh) and his son Luke (played by Chris Kelly) who keep trying to drag the lost sheep back to the meadows of crime and his former life. While all the time his wife and brother Kevin (played by Luke Collins) try to make him see the light through the darkness. All the while Anthony is haunted by his conscience who takes the form of his late alcoholic father (played by Padraig McGuinley).

This is truly a dark tale. If you are looking for a laugh, this is not one for you. But it is certainly gripping and sometimes frightening. The brother dynamic between Kevin and Anthony for me is the crux of the story and as the frustration of the younger brother mounts the story moves with it. The looming presence of Jimmy is constant as is the growing despair of Kelly, who also delivers tender moments towards the man she has only ever loved. The addition of the late father who strolls in in different variations of drunkenness is a lovely touch.

The script, in my opinion, is a little young and maybe needs some development but the story is a sound one and the dialogue is true and real, and as gritty as the soil of North Inner Dublin. It punches you in the gut when you least expect and leaves you wanting more. The potential of the writer is beyond doubt and the potential for great writing is one to fill you with excitement.

The acting was a little overdone in part but considering this was the first night and the distractions (not of their making) that the cast had to put up with,  they were mostly very believable and nicely portrayed. Good performances from the lead roles, Ian Anthony and Sorcha Kehoe. A stellar job by Luke Collins and a nice freshness from Chris Kelly. But a special mention must be made for actors Adam Walsh who really did a good job and especially Padraig McGuinley who owned the stage at times.

A well-designed stage and lighting and sound set up and competently directed by  Angelene Milne, Hubris is a voyage into delightful darkness

The production runs from the 13th to the 15th of June at The Sean O’ Casey Theatre, East Wall.  Tickets from Eventbrite at the link below.

https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/hubris-tickets-46818073117

 

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