Saturday, July 23, 2011

‘Parting Glass’ speaks dramatically of hope and dashed Irish dreams, on pitch and dole

"The Parting Glass," a brilliant one-man play, is now at the Barrow Street Theatre in New York City, through July 31. It was performed by the right man, a real Dub, Ray Yeates, and written by the right man, another real Dub, Dermot Bolger.

The play is based on the last 40 or so years of the Irish experience, as recalled by a Dublin man who has just landed in Dublin airport, returned from a football match in France, football being one passion that virtually all Irishmen can share (at least during the match).

The production demonstrates that playwright, novelist and poet Bolger, and William Shakespeare have a few things in common. Both men capture the essence of their times. Neither man is found wanting when it comes to turning a phrase, comic or otherwise. Neither is there a wasted word in the works of either man.

It would be hard for any future actor to match, much less beat, Eoin as most memorably performed by Yeates, who carried the emotions of the audience with him throughout the performance.

All credit to Niamh Ní Chonchubhair, who pulled together the axis: Ballymun production, and to the (thankfully air-conditioned, in the middle of this heat wave) Barrow Street Theatre. Don't miss it. -- Liam Murphy, Heritage Editor

PERFORMANCE DETAILS: Through July 31, 2011: Wednesday-Friday at 9PM; Saturday at 2:30 & 9PM; Sunday at 5PM. Tickets: (212) 868-4444 or <>. Running time is 75 minutes. Anyone who mentions “AxisPG’ will receive a $15 discount on the $35 ticket. Mention you read this Hell’s Kitchen, the blog of

The Barrow Street Theatre is at 27 Barrow Street (at 7th Avenue), in Greenwich Village, Manhattan. The theatre's phone number is (212) 868-4444. For information about future venues or to book the production, contact Niamh Ní Chonchubhair <>.

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