‘Juno and the Paycock’ by Seán O’Casey


In September, as part of the 2011 Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival the Abbey Theatre in a co-production with the English National Theatre will present  Juno and the Paycock by Seán O’Casey. Directed by Howard Davies and designed by Irish designer Bob Crowley this production will star Sinéad Cusack and Ciarán Hinds. After its run on the Abbey stage, it will transfer to the English National Theatre. Juno and the Paycock is set during the Irish Civil War of the 1920’s. In this, the second part of O’Casey’s great Dublin Trilogy, the ambitions of a tenement family are set against the political and social events which conspire to keep them in their place. A very human tragedy of ambition, folly and loss.

I am looking forward to the matinee tomorrow (Wed).

Update: I went to the matinee show this afternoon (Wed). I really enjoyed it, and so too did the audience. It lived up to all my expectations.

The stage was laid out just like the typical tenement Victorian house that one stills sees on Parnell Sq. and all around Dublin. I loved the wooden floors and the fancy chaise longue and round mahogany table cover with a blood red tablecloth. And what appeared like balloon back Victorian chairs and one open Victorian armchair were so befitting the large ceilinged ornate walls. (I have a penchant for old furniture and old houses. Most of my Goldenbridge counterparts abhor big houses because of having bad childhood memories growing up in two of them.) I love wide open indoor spaces. There was also a stove and two bedrooms off to the right of stage. I give the stage settings the thumbs-up. The first image will show one exactly what the house looked like at the very end, as it was laid bare by the bailiffs. I don’t want to give the story away, but it was not a very pleasant for Mr. Boyle and his fair-weather friend, Jockser, having to arrive back to an empty house.

I saw Alfred Hitchcock’s* library remastered DVD 1930 film about a year ago. I also saw the stage play in London in the late seventies or early eighties.

*I attended Alfred Hitchcock’s funeral at Westminster Cathedral, London. I got John Mills autograph. Ingrid Bergman told me to gooooo—–awaaaaay after I approached her for autograph. Sadly – she died six months later.


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