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Published on May 13th, 2011 | by Niamh


Port Authority at Matchbox Theatre

Since I’ve seen this, Le Café Des Irlandais have sadly announced their closure and thus, the closure of Matchbox Theatre there. Matchbox will continue to seek a new home but this is your last chance to see anything in this space for the time being. I recommend doing it, this weekend is your last chance!

Port Authority, written by Conor McPherson opened in the Matchbox Theatre on 3rd May last. After a very successful run of DC Moore’s ‘Honest’, Back of the Hand Theatre Company took on this gritty but entertaining piece by Conor McPherson next. Port Authority was first performed in London in 2001 and since then has gained critical acclaim on both sides of the Atlantic.

As is usual with me, I had no idea what to expect. Having enjoyed Honest, and knowing that Edwin Mullane was again going to perform, I had high hopes and I wasn’t disappointed. The stage setting in the Matchbox can never be anything but simple and for Port Authority it was simplified even more with an all black backdrop, three chairs and three actors. Three men of differing ages tell us a story of their life, not their whole life, just what’s going on at the moment, how they got there, how they felt about it.

Port Authority tells a story of three loosely interlinked lives. Kevin, played by Edwin Mullane, is a young lad leaving home for the first time. He has no job, he has some crazy mates and he has just moved out of home to live with some of these mates. And a female housemate who, we get the feeling, is the only reason he agreed to move out at all.

Dermot, played by Art Kearns, is a married man with a son and a brand new job. He can’t believe his luck, the com[any are treating him like a total rock star and he loves it! He expects it all to end at any minute leading to paranoid episodes, much drinking and eventually, a very intimate and poignant moment with his wife.

Joe, played by Dick Tobin, is a pensioner living in a retirement home. He receives a mysterious parcel in the post – “it’s not even my birthday!” – which sparks in him a trip down memory lane to a time gone, when he was foolish and driven a little mad by his feelings, real or imagined, for a woman other than his wife.

All three of the men tell very different stories that are all very loosely linked to each other. They are all, ultimately, about a woman and love. Unrequited, mutual and imagined, each of them tales a sweet and often hilarious tale. Art Kearns in particular brings a huge amount of energy to this little stage.

Port Authority is not to be missed!

Port Authority is running in the Matchbox Theatre on South George’s Street, Dublin 2 from 3 – 15 May at 6.30 p.m. nightly. Tickets cost €10 and include a complimentary glass of wine or beer. You can contact the box office on 085 807 9612.

Photos by Orla Kischen

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You can reach me on niamh@culch.ie :)

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