A Tough Act To Follow: UCD Musical Society’s Curtains

 
 

Dylan O’Neill takes a sneak peek at UCD Musical Society’s production of Curtains, which runs from the 7th – 10th March in Astra Hall. 

 

Despite the treacherous conditions, the cast and crew made the necessary journey in the early hours of Monday morning to begin setting up for the week ahead. In his directorial debut, Rory Sheehy brings Kander and Ebb’s comedy Curtains to the stage, in Astra Hall. The pair were also responsible for the music and lyrics behind Chicago and Cabaret. With this production, Sheehy, along with assistant director and choreographer Niamh McGowan, wanted, “to push Astra Hall to its limits,” in terms of what they could put onstage.

The show follows the story of a theatre company in Boston, Massachusettes, plunged into a murder mystery after their leading lady was murdered during the opening night performance. Jack Hanrahan plays Lt. Frank Cioffi, called in to solve the case. Hanrahan brings to life the starstruck homicide detective, whose devotion to solving the mystery is second only to his devotion to the spotlight of the stage, with brilliant comedic success.

The orchestra open playing an overture reminiscent of classical Broadway shows such as Oklahoma! 

Led by musical director Hannah Reilly, the orchestra open by playing an overture reminiscent of classical Broadway shows such as Oklahoma! and The Producers. Throughout the show, the orchestra, which is heavily composed of brass instruments, add to the comedic hijinx of the reluctant company and the suspense as members are picked off by the killer one-by-one.

McGowan designed the big ensemble numbers of ‘Thataway!’ and ‘Kansasland’ to showcase the strong dancing prowess of the cast, most notably Eimear Finnegan as Georgia Hendricks and Lorna Bailey as Elaine…excuse me, Bambi Bernét. Louise O’Connor and Jack Hanrahan recreate the chemistry seen between Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire in what is sure ‘A Tough Act to Follow.’

They, along with the rest of the cast show the many, many hours of hard work that vocal director Anna Bergin has dedicated to the performance

Several soloists have their moment to shine in the spotlight. Malachy Conlon and Laura Osbourne will move the audience to tears and laughter, as the forlorn lyricist and overbearing producer, respectively. They, along with the rest of the cast show the many, many hours of hard work that vocal director Anna Bergin has dedicated to the performance. Almost as many hours as there are renditions of ‘In the Same Boat’.

The extended cast is filled with over the top performances, adding to the hilarity of the show. Ones to watch are Cian Gallagher as the theatrical director Christopher Belling, whose one-liners and snappy remarks will leave you in stitches; and Adam Donnelly as Sidney Bernstein, the not-so-silent partner to Laura Osbourne’s cynical producer Carmen.

Curtains runs from the 7th-10th March and is sure leave the gasping to their very last breath with laughter.

 

 

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