Mum took care of Spike last night so we hit the town for the second Saturday running. We got cheap balcony seats at the Comedy to see Brian Friel's play in preview. They were in the front row however and I got vertigo, so we moved further back, just behind a row of American students. They were quite well behaved on the whole, but the blonde girl on the end slept the whole 100 minutes without an interval, head between her knees.
The play, given a thorough toothcombing by Mr Billington here (spoiler alert!), is a fascinating companion to his 1980 masterwork Translations, which I know well from a brief spell as an A level teacher. Same concerns (advent of Irish rebellion, its first stirrings, the provocations), same guile, same humane wit and pathos. There is however, 25 years on, a contrast - The Home Place wears its genius lightly, conceals its art, where Translations spread it out on the table and said, look what I've found.
Tom Courtenay, by the way, gives a wonderful lesson in how to dominate the stage without really trying. He's fantastic, and has great support.
Friel again jogged me to look up my ancestors.