ED2018 4/5 Reviews ED2018 Theatre Reviews

East Belfast Boy (Prime Cut Productions)

By | Published on Sunday 26 August 2018

You’re lucky if you ever see a performance that crackles with this kind of electric energy. Ryan McParland is an East Belfast boy, his toxic masculinity a suit of armour; messing around with his mates, dealing a little at the club, struggling with the anxiety he tries to repress. McParland commands a huge stage, dancing and jumping to a soundtrack of thudding techno by Phil Keiran. Emma Jordan’s direction makes gorgeous use of this virtuoso performance, alongside Oona Doherty’s movement design. There are moments when the sweat, the sinew, the visceral smack of this piece feel relentless, but would you want to pace it any differently? The hour hurtles by and we stand to applaud, dumbstruck by McParland’s intensity and dedication.

Summerhall, until 26 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Alexander Hartley]