Review: Outside Mullingar has audiences enthralled and bursting with laughter

Yellow Point Drama Group avoids the maudlin and the melancholy with must-see performance

Gerry Beltgens Special to the Chronicle

The Yellow Point Drama Group has a hit on its hands.

Aside from the regular opening night glitches, the troupe put on a very entertaining evening that had the audience roaring with laughter time and time again. Ted Girard as Tony Reilly set the tone early delivering his outlandish insults to his son Anthony and neighbour Aoife with a deadpan face.

Outside Mullingar is a melange of every Irish cliche ever told and should not work as a comedy and should not work as a drama. The story of two families tied together by a shared but disputed driveway, death and madness could be a recipe for a maudlin melancholy mess. And I am sure that in the wrong hands this would be the case.

But Director Armando Dos Santos and his cast find and sell the humour in absurdness and create a truly hilarious journey that kept the audience enthralled and bursting with laughter.

Kirstin Forester may not have a perfect Irish accent but she plays Rosemary Muldoon with passion and fire. She is a force of nature that no one can oppose or resist. But she also shows us the sadness that feeds the darkness of her character. Her hidden desire for Anthony is obvious to the audience and we want her to find happiness and love. This is expressed later in the second act in a hilarious pas de deux that you need to see for yourself.

Clayton Orlando as the complicated Anthony imbues a “sad lump” of a character with humour, pathos and when needed some fire. I will not spoil anything but the revelations near the end are brilliantly handled. Again this could have been a massive fail but the actors delivered and triumphed.

Patricia Zogar plays Aoife Muldoon, the mother of Rosemary, with heart. She is a believable character who has lost much but still has a strong spark of humour. Zogar grounds the play and provides a bit of a counterpart to the others’ occasionally unfathomable behaviour. It’s complicated but everything comes together in the end and the time passed too quickly.

This effort by the Yellow Point Drama Group is a wonderful performance. Get seats near the front. There is a lot of dialogue and you don’t want to miss a word. This is a must-see for any live theatre fan!

Outside Mullingar was written by John Patrick Shanley and is playing at the Cedar Community Centre April 5,6,12,13,19,20. Doors open at 7:00 pm.

There is a matinee April 20, doors open at 1:30. Don’t miss the carrot cake in the concession run by the CGIT Alumni.

 

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