Sunday, September 24

Heaven – Traverse Theatre

This play is a compelling duel monologue between a wife and her husband during the weekend of a spirited wedding celebration in a small town in the Irish Midlands. The dialogue alternates between Janet Moran’s Mairead, a 50-something social worker with a fiery temper, and Mal, her mild-mannered teacher husband who has somehow managed to suppress his homosexual leanings for the last thirty years, but suddenly, with the littlest of pushes, finds a calling to action them. Meanwhile, Mairead finds her own passions reignited in an old flame who she hasn’t seen since she was 20.

Beautifully written by Eugene O’Brien, and sensitively delivered with a light Irish brogue, direct to the audience, has everyone leaning in and laughing or smiling knowingly. The set and lighting design are exquisitely simple, but somehow with very subtle tonal variations perfectly manage to convey the action unfolding indoors, outdoors, on the street, in the pub or hotel, with perfect darkness and the gleaming eyes of the watchers all around.

A poetic, hypnotic and intimate look behind the curtain at two characters who might appear mundane and controlled on the surface but are bubbling with unseen emotions below. Consummately done and emotionally true.

Reviewer: Greg Holstead

Reviewed: 19th August 2023

North West End UK Rating:

Rating: 4 out of 5.