Tuesday, July 16

Tag: Alison Oliver

Portia Coughlan – The Almeida
London

Portia Coughlan – The Almeida

There were many factors that made me giddy to see Portia Coughlan. My Irish heritage, The Almeida’s track record for uniquely dazzling theatre, an attraction to the dark side and the play’s notoriety as a ‘90s game changer. Broadly speaking, Marina Carr’s Gothic shocker didn’t disappoint, but might be prey to having a lot to live up to. Alison Oliver plays Portia Coughlan and turns out a compelling, complex performance that’s haunting, oddly thrilling and almost alien to behold. Portia is a spiky, volatile mystery to the other characters in the play and the audience who’re also grappling with her quirks. We meet Portia on her 30th birthday. She is wallowing in pain and grief, fifteen years after the suicide of her twin brother. Portia chooses to self-destruct with drink and spiteful ra...