Review: Evening Echo 14/2/2019 by Liam Heylin
A Thousand Moments Of Extraordinary Pleasure
Cork Arts Theatre
A QUIETLY challenging play pushes us out of comfort zones to offer an antidote of sorts to a humdrum life which can see us dying slowly by a thousand cuts.
Playwright, Brendan Griffin has come up with a kinky scenario to explore this and other ideas. Two men meet at lunchtime in the small office of a busy building. They arrive for an assignation which is both anonymous and intimate. One of them puts aside his regular macho be-suited existence to cross-dress into a more fulfilling identity. A retired man in search of pleasure and exhilaration hooks up with him.
While there is some spanking and risqué banter, the encounters are also – somewhat counter-intuitively – chaste and bashful.
The scenario could so easily be played for laughs or sensationalised but, director, Tom Kibbe has gone for an underplayed and even slow-motion unfolding of the drama. And his two actors are totally on board. Malcolm Adams plays the married man whose retirement card included the wish from a younger female colleague that his life would have a thousand moments of extraordinary pleasure. Many of the moments he seeks out are quite simple if not banal, apart from this one where he meets Mark D’Aughton’s character. D’aughton’s role is a big ask and could easily have become a cringe-worthy fiasco. To his credit, the actor finds his way into the humanity of a character who is daring to do something that revolutionises his life.
There’s a sense of Edward Albee about the piece as sex, identity and social mores are explored and there is a dabbling too in absurdity and existential angst. At times it is an odd mix of things as Griffin appears to want to go thus far but no farther, like he is talking a walk on the wild side but wants to be home in time for supper. But that is something that might just be said of his two characters.
Whatever it is and whatever it isn’t, it is an interesting new play that is worth seeing – teasingly written and very well acted.
UCC Radio Review
Audience Reaction Videos
I went to see A Thousand Moments Of Extraordinary Pleasure, last evening ...I was blown away, Do not miss this show Cork! the sensitivity, the acting the writing and the direction just stunning. It was a play that embraced the middle ground, because curiously it has more edge to it than the cutting edge. DO NOT MISS... when the word gets out there you won’t get a ticket so my advice is book!
A beautifully realised piece.
Would highly recommend this play, I went in and did not even read the prologue as I hate knowing what's lies ahead. This play certainly did not disappoint, I was gripped at the start, I felt like I was listening and looking in on their private life and secrets.
Amazing play! from the story to the acting. a delight!
What brilliant performances, direction and production values last night everyone. A real roller-coaster of emotions. At various times, I found it endearing, sad, funny and a true love story. A massive well done.
I have rarely spent a more enjoyable or indeed thought-provoking Tuesday night!!! This short play (approximately 90 mins) explores a burgeoning(unlikely) relationship between two characters who, as the play progresses realise how much they have come to rely upon one another. It's hilariously funny, terribly poignant and a real little study of human relationships....in all of their guises.
A Masterpiece not to be missed, wow!
This is an absolute gem! The intimacy and honesty in the performances is inspiring. Get to see A Thousand Moments of Extraordinary Pleasure - you will not be disappointed
Absolutely brilliant. Just loved the play from start to finish. Hilarious and yet so moving. Bravo
Very dramatic but very funny too. Well worth to go and see it!
A truly fantastic show! thank you so much for tonight's performance, best Valentine theatre date ever.
Booked again for Saturday night.
Really good production!! A must see show!!