“It could be worse” observes Baby, one of the pair of Irish sisters who open and close Margaret Perry’s richly enjoyable new play Paradise Now! at the Bush Theatre, as she contemplates their less-than-ideal lives; that statement applies equally to the existences of the other four women whose frustrations, tragedies and eccentricities inform this delightful, unruly tragicomedy.
How many plays pass the Bechdel Test? Originally featured in a comic strip, and popularised in film criticism, it simply states that to pass this test your story has to have: 1) at least two women in it; 2) who talk to each other; 3) about something other than a man. Well, one of the brilliant things about Irish writer Margaret Perry’s new dark comedy, Paradise Now! is that it passes this test with an A Plus grade.
The Lovely Bones is one of the best plays I’ve seen this year. In fact, Melly Still’s vital production is the best page to stage adaptation I’ve seen since Curious Incident.
It’s hard to know how to reframe the complexities of envy and irrational hate in youthful terms for Othello at the Union Theatre, but though Cornelissen doesn’t always quite manage it, the result still offers an intelligent take on the classic story.