The next play to be staged at The Apollo will be ‘The Loves of Cass McGuire’ by the renowned Irish playwright Brian Friel.
Set in 1960’s Ireland, the play follows the fortunes of Cass as she returns to her homeland after half a century in New York on Skid Row, shacked up with the owner of the greasy spoon she worked in. Her younger brother Harry has made a life for himself and his wife Alice and has a prosperous business and four children, only one of whom, Dom, still lives at home, as does Cass and Harry’s elderly – and very deaf – mother.
Alice and Harry prepare to welcome Cass home but, expecting a staid, respectable American spinster aunt, they are horrified to witness the whisky-drinking, smoking, swearing, garrulous Cass going on the rampage through their home town. Embarrassed by her, they shelve plans for a welcome home party for all the neighbours and instead dump her in Eden House, a retirement home.
There, Cass encounters Trilbe Costello, Mr Ingram and Pat Quinn, all of whom have also experienced disappointment and rejection in their lives, and have found ways of dealing with their hurt. Initially scornful of the ‘gooks’ in ‘the workhouse’, Cass find her own determination gradually eroding until, beaten into submission, she is driven to find her own way out of her despair.
As with many of Friel’s plays, ‘Cass McGuire’ is a true tragicomedy – there are moments of great humour underpinned by thought-provoking and emotional truths.
‘The Loves of Cass McGuire’ is at The Apollo from 24 March to 1 April (not Sunday or Monday). Tickets are available now via our website.