Skip to main content

Stones in his Pockets


Tron Theatre, Glasgow
4 stars
Anyone expecting Marie Jones’ ingenious two-hander about a Hollywood 
film crew descending on a rural Irish village to be a full-on 
knockabout romp is in for a surprise. Because so adept is Jones at the 
theatrical and comedic double-bluff that what starts out as a sit-com 
style yarn about a couple of film extras on the make becomes both an 
elegy for a dying community and an artistic call to arms against a form 
of colonialism that denigrates the culture it feeds off. Some sixteen 
years after the play first appeared, Andy Arnold’s new production for 
the Tron arrives with a renewed vigour perhaps informed by the current 
climate of recession.

Jake and Charlie meet on the set of a tax-break enabled windswept epic 
being shot on their doorsteps, and featuring a real-life big-screen 
starlet as the female lead. For an impoverished work-force, the forty 
quid a day the men earn is easy pickings. When a teenage drug addict is 
found dead in the river after being refused a job on the film before 
being thrown out of his local, the initially hilarious war of attrition 
between Jake and Charlie on one side and a roll-call of film crew 
flunkies takes an altogether more serious turn.

By having two actors play all the parts, Jones not only embraces a poor 
theatre aesthetic, she also sets up a fantastic vehicle for actors to 
leap aboard. Keith Fleming and Robbie Jack do this with slick, 
well-drilled aplomb without ever losing sight of the play’s serious 
points. As an intelligently populist crowd-pleaser, it can’t fail. As a 
critique of the ongoing corruption of mass entertainment, it’s deadly.

The Herald, July 12th 2012

ends





Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Art School Dance Goes On Forever – Snapshots Of Masters Of The Multiverse

Intro – Snapshots – Deaf School

1

In 1980, the same year as the Manchester band, Magazine, released a 7
inch single called A Song From Under The Floorboards – a three verse
and chorus distillation of Dostoyevsky's novel, Notes From Underground
– an art school scandal occurred.

This scandal took place in Liverpool, and was based around a project
called the Furbelows, although it became better known in the Liverpool
Echo and other organs that reported it as the Woolly Nudes.

The Furbelows, or Woolly Nudes, were a group of artists who had come
out of Liverpool College of Art, who, dressed in grotesque woolly
costumes which featured knitted approximations of male and female
genitalia, made assorted public interventions around the city centre as
kind of living sculptures acting out assorted narratives.

The Furbelows project had been funded by what was then Merseyside Arts
Association, and, after the participants were arrested and taken to
court on obscenity charges after what…

Peter Brook – The Prisoner

Peter Brook is no stranger to Scotland, ever since the guru of European and world theatre first brought his nine-hour epic, The Mahabharata, to Glasgow in 1988. That was at the city’s old transport museum, which by 1990 had become Tramway, the still-functioning permanent venue that opened up Glasgow and Scotland as a major channel for international theatre in a way that had previously only been on offer at Edinburgh International Festival.
Brook and his Paris-based Theatre des Bouffes du Nord company’s relationship with Tramway saw him bring his productions of La Tragedie de Carmen, La Tempete, Pellease et Mellisande, The Man Who…, and Oh Les Beaux Jours – the French version of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days – to Glasgow.
Thirty years on from The Mahabharata, Brook comes to EIF with another piece of pan-global theatre as part of a residency by Theatre des Bouffes du Nord, which Brook has led since he decamped to Paris from London in the early 1970s. The current Edinburgh residency has alr…

Romeo And Juliet - Shakespeare's Globe Comes to Glasgow

Open-air Shakepeares are a summer-time perennial of the theatre calendar, attracting picnicking audiences as much as midges. More often than not, such romps through the grass are frothy, heritage industry affairs designed to be accompanied by strawberries and cream and not to be taken too seriously. Shakespeare’s Globe theatre company look set to change such perceptions when they open their outdoor tour of Romeo And Juliet in Glasgow next week as part of the West End festival.

For the two young actors taking the title roles of the doomed lovers, it will also be something of a homecoming. Richard Madden and Ellie Piercy both studied in Glasgow prior to turning professional. Indeed, Madden has yet to graduate from the acting course at RSAMD, and, as well as facing the pressures of playing such a meaty role in close proximity to the audience, will have the added anxiety of being assessed and graded by his tutors.

“This is the end of my third year,” says Madden following a Saturday mornin…