Dark Irish Comedy is a Wild Blend of Thriller and Violent Melodrama

October 1, 2013

An hysterically comedic play that charts the life of a 40-year-old virgin, her relationship with her manipulative mother and her last chance of real romance.

Life is a constant battle of wills between Maureen (Meryl Herbert) and her conniving mother Mag (Eileen Symonds).

Life is a constant battle of wills between Maureen (Meryl Herbert) and her conniving mother Mag (Eileen Symonds). (Photo: Phil Mansell)

That’s ‘The Beauty Queen of Leenane’, this month’s presentation from Newport Playgoers at the Dolman Theatre.

In their lonely cottage in the mountains of County Galway, Maureen Folan is always at odds with her mother, a sour old woman self-exiled to a rocking chair who persecutes her daughter with demands for porridge.

Maureen (Meryl Herbert) finds a last chance of romance with Pato (David Livingstone), a simple-minded labourer

Maureen (Meryl Herbert) finds a last chance of romance with Pato (David Livingstone), a simple-minded labourer (Photo: Phil Mansell)

One day the chance of escape comes in the shape of Pato, a simple-minded local who has returned from working in England. Maureen sees this as her last chance for love. However, as their relationship flourishes a shocking and disturbing train of events is set in motion…

Written by Martin McDonagh, the play rocketed him to fame when it opened in the West End in 1996, winning a nomination for Best Play at the Olivier Awards, with the subsequent Broadway production winning four Tony Awards.

Since writing this play, McDonagh has been as well known for his movies as for his plays with In Bruges earning him an Oscar nomination and Seven Psychopaths gaining critical acclaim in 2012.

‘The Beauty Queen of Leenane is at the Dolman Theatre from 16 – 19 October at 7.15 pm, with an extra matinee performance on the Saturday at 2.30 pm. To book tickets call 01633 263670 or visit www.dolmantheatre.co.uk.


‘Beauty Queen’ is looking good!

September 18, 2013
Life is a constant battle of wills between Maureen (Meryl Herbert) and her conniving mother Mag (Eileen Symonds).

Life is a constant battle of wills between Maureen (Meryl Herbert) and her conniving mother Mag (Eileen Symonds). (Photo: Phil Mansell)

Next month’s production by Newport Playgoers is The Beauty Queen of Leenane,  a wild blend of outrageous comedy thriller, violence and grand melodrama.

Written by Martin McDonagh, the play rocketed him to fame when it opened in the West End in 1996, winning a nomination for Best Play at the Olivier Awards, with the subsequent Broadway production winning four Tony Awards.

Maureen (Meryl Herbert) finds a last chance of romance with Pato (David Livingstone), a simple-minded labourer

Maureen (Meryl Herbert) finds a last chance of romance with Pato (David Livingstone), a simple-minded labourer (Photo: Phil Mansell)

This hysterically comedic, edge-of-your-seat play charts the life of Maureen Folan, a 40-year-old virgin and her relationship with her manipulative mother, a sour old woman self-exiled to a rocking chair who persecutes her daughter with demands for porridge.

In their lonely cottage in the mountains of County Galway, Maureen bites back until the chance of escape comes in the shape of Pato, a simple-minded local who has returned from working in England. Maureen sees this as her last chance for love.

However, as their relationship flourishes a shocking and disturbing train of events is set in motion…

Maureen (Meryl Herbet) is tempted to conk Ray (James Symonds) on the noggin with a poker (Photo: Phil Mansell)

Maureen (Meryl Herbet) is tempted to conk Ray (James Symonds)
on the noggin with a poker (Photo: Phil Mansell)

Since writing this play, McDonagh has been as well known for his movies as for his plays with In Bruges earning him an Oscar nomination and Seven Psychopaths gaining critical acclaim in 2012.

‘The Beauty Queen of Leenane is at the Dolman Theatre from 16 – 19 October 2013.


Playgoers Announce 90th Season of Plays

July 3, 2013
Newport Playgoers' 90th Season

Newport Playgoers’ 90th Season

Newport Playgoers have announced the plays that will make up their 90th Season.

Featuring an innovative mix of comedy and drama, the new season begins with ‘The 39 Steps’ at the Dolman Theatre in September.

Playgoers are always keen to recruit  new members, not only onstage but also to help behind the scenes with lighting, sound, wardrobe, props and scenery.