#Fightback2020 is a a collaboration between TakeYourSeats and The New Theatre and consists of twelve short plays over the next twelve days. Each evening at 9.15 an original work will be streamed live on Facebook page of The New Theatre.
The New Theatre is one of the best supporters of Independent Theatre in Dublin and has hosted some excellent performances over the last few years. Miriam Needham’s Compostella being a perfect example of the superb original productions that have staged. The theatre continues to support writers and artists during the lockdown.
The lockdown has been a bad time for everyone and artists have continued to work hard to keep providing entertainment and creating some amazing works. Although these productions are free to all, it is possible to make a small donation to make sure that great independent writing does not suffer during this difficult period.
An Unmade Bed is certainly a good example and is clearly a creation of the current lockdown but it also is about so much more and the writing and performance is excellent.
Who the fuck leaves their girlfriend in the middle of a pandemic?
The first instalment in the run was Elizabeth Moynihan’s ‘An Unmade Bed’ which was performed by Laoisa Sexton. The play focusses on the relationship between Dolly and her boyfriend who are struggling with the quarantine restrictions.
You’re out the door and down the Street, clothes spilling out of your ruck sack. Socks and phone charger fall out, roll under a passing car. I bang on the widow. But It’s been painted shut so I can’t open it to beg. Instead I yell through the glass hoping you’ll hear me.
The boyfriends seems on the face of it to be struggling a little more than Dolly and when we meet him first he is returning to the flat. Drunk or high, maybe both, we are not really sure. But, certainly out of his mind.
Sunday, you come in late way after lockdown is announced. So out of it you open the wardrobe thinking it’s the bathroom. I wake. What are you doing? Nooooo! My Guitar. Too late… I imagine the piss running down the wood, metal, strings and onto the floor.
The play balances a subtle sense of humour: she awakes to find her boyfriend mistaking her wardrobe for the toilet, tries to stop him then getting into the bed before putting him in the shower and turning on the cold tap.
Although, the play is set in the middle of the quarantine caused by the Corona Virus the relationship has clearly been on the rocks long before the virus hit. As such the play looks into the impact of the quarantine on a relationship such as this one.
Stop blaming the fucking virus. You are too scared to move. You’ve barely left this room since we moved in.
And the impact is not positive.
The play is very atmospheric and the new media, streaming on Facebook, leads to some innovation. Much of the play is in the mind of Dolly where she goes through conversations they have had, the first time they met, what she thought of him at first. The sound editing is excellent and adds hugely to the atmosphere.
The imagery and use of the minimal props is excellent with the unmade bed, morphing almost into clouds and then into the sea as Dolly recalls an episode of the Blue Planet.
I love nature programmes, watch them on my phone to pass the time on a dry day as there is nothing to count. Mackerel are so cool. Like underwater tiger cubs. Their markings I mean.
Throughout, this is such an engaging performance by Laoisa Sexton of a very will written play by Elizabeth Moynihan. it is atmospheric and very entertaining and was an excellent opening piece in the #Fightback2020 Festival.
Writer by Elizabeth Moynihan
Performed by Laoisa Sexton