A few years ago we went to check out the revival of Brian Friel’s play Translations at the Olivier stage at the National Theatre, describing it as having “a real beauty in the text and genuine warmth and humour in its delivery”.
We were hoping for much the same from the Josie Rourke’s revival of Friel’s Dancing at Lughnasa, which has previously won both the Olivier Award and the Tony Award for Best Play.
Boasting an impressive cast, starring Father Ted’s Ardal O’Hanlon and Derry Girls’ Siobhan McSweeney, our expectations going into this show were very high.
Thankfully Dancing at Lughnasa really succeeds on multiple levels. It’s told as a memory, with the now-adult Michael (Tom Vaughan-Lawlor) recounting a childhood summer spent with his mother Chris (Alison Over) and his aunts, in the fictional village of Ballybeg in rural Donegal.