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FOOD’S BEST CAMEOS IN THE THEATRE
Ah, September. Otherwise known, in Ireland at least, as theatre month. True, true, many folks visit the theatre year- round but for those of us who prefer to binge on our culture, autumn holds forth the annual delicacies of The Dublin Fringe Fest, The Dublin Theatre Festival and the nationwide Culture Night.
Our schedules are full and some may have already bitten off more than they can chew – just how many shows can a person go to in a single night?
And what of food’s place in the theatre?
Sure, it’s still frowned upon and relatively unheard of to munch on popcorn at a play ( I mean, really) but food on the stage can be a very powerful trope, heightening already dramatic scenes with subtext and subtlety.
Perhaps one of the most gripping uses of food in a play is the dining scene in Rope, written in 1929 by Patrick Hamilton based on a true story and brought to the big screen by Alfred Hitchcock.
The murderers hide the body of their victim in an antique wooden chest and host a dinner party for the unsuspecting family of said victim – using the aforementioned wooden chest as a buffet table for the party food. Cold as ice!
George Bernard Shaw set his plot twist around a waiter who serves a family a meal of soup, turbot, fowl, cold pudding and more in his 1897 comedy