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You can’t stop the boats: Sorry We Didn’t Die At Sea @ParkTheatre

Sorry We Didn’t Die At Sea by Italian playwright Emanuele Aldrovandi and translated by Marco Young, has made a topical return to London at the Park Theatre after playing earlier this summer at the Seven Dials Playhouse. In a week when leaders and leaders in waiting were talking about illegal immigration, it seemed like a topical choice . It also has one hell of an evocative title. The piece opens with Adriano Celantano’s Prisencolinensinainciusol , which sets the scene for what we are about to see. After all, a song about communication barriers seems perfect for a play about people trafficking and illegal immigration. One side doesn’t understand why they happen, and the other still comes regardless of the latest government announcement / slogan .  However, the twist here is that the crossing is undertaken the other way. People are fleeing Europe instead of escaping war or poverty in Africa or the Middle East. It’s set sometime in the not-too-distant future. There is a crisis causing p

Unfinished business: Continuity @Finborough @Continuityplay

It's an odd feeling to laughing along with man about plant a bomb... But such is the world you're drawn into with Gerry Moynihan's Continuity, currently at the Finborough Theatre.

What's chilling about this this monologue is how it hooks you in to the story . Here the cause is taken as a given. Unquestioned, unflinching and ongoing... The Good Friday Agreement is the thin veneer of peace that conceals what's really happening on the ground. The ongoing rough justice, score settling and resistance that is largely unreported.

The story involves Padraig (Paul Kennedy), a member of the Continuity IRA. He is dedicated to the cause. But after meeting a girl from Barcelona, he soon finds his colleagues questioning him  about his commitment. And he begins to wonder about it himself.

Kennedy's Padriag is an engaging storyteller as he moves from cracking jokes to the details of planting a bomb. His likability catches you off guard as the story takes a darker turn. But he's also effective in bringing to life the world he inhabits - the humanity and inhumanity of it all.

The space of the Finborough, which is also being used as an Edwardian drawing room for Just To Get Married, is transformed by May Hannah Davies into something darker here. The drop cloths and moody lighting (and maybe the smell of fresh paint from the recent theatre refurb) emphasise the murky nature of the story.

Underscoring the tense mood with samples of news reports and an eclectic choice of music is Anna Clock's sound design.

Naturally being a story about Northern Ireland, violence and death feature throughout. It's enough to make you wonder what frictionless post-Brexit solution will be necessary to bring this closer to a resolution.

Directed by Shane Dempsey, Continuity is at the Finborough Theatre on Sundays, Mondays and Tuesday matinees until 19 August.


Photos by Gary Wolf

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