THEATRE The Pleasure Ground First staged earlier this year as Fregoli theatre company’s first main stage production at Galway’s Town Hall Theatre, and planning to tour, Jarlath Tivnan’s play tells the story of a group of estranged friends who meet back at their old teenage haunt, a playground known as the Pleasure Ground. All around the faded park, though, the old town is dying, and life hasn’t matched up to their expectations, just as buried secrets are unearthed, past grievances boil over and old scores are settled. Since the work of James Joyce came out of copyright, almost four years ago, we’ve seen several version of his work reach the stage in intriguing new shapes, including (but certainly not limited to) Olwen Fouéré’s solo run on Finegans Wake, the Corn Exchange’s Dubliners and the Abbey’s The Dead. Here, Performance Corporation take his best-known short story, the concluding chapter of Dubliners, and give it a musical treatment in this new chamber opera from composer Ellen Cranitch and librettist Tom Swift. Through a bittersweet Christmas gathering in 1904, in which little appears to happen
Therapy? on the surface but all the while challenges flare, lives are falling apart and the chance of fresh beginnings fall as softly as the snow, Jo Mangan directs Clare Barrett, Lisa Lambe, Ruth McGill (above) and Rory Musgrave, accompanied by a string quartet.