Gutted is a black comedy that is set in a fish factory in 1980’s Dublin written by Sharon Byrne and directed by Chris White. It explores the lives of three strong women who are friends through working in the same dead end job. Yet all have dreams of something bigger and better than what their lives are at the moment.
The stage is sparsely set with nothing but a plain white backdrop with strip lighting, standing lamps and ceiling lights. However, the lights are cleverly linked and used as extra characters throughout and this is incredibly well presented. The story is told in interlinking comic monologue from the three women Deidre ( Niamh Finlay), Delores ( Sarah Hosford) and Breda (Eleanor Byrne) covering just one particular night of their lives.
It is Irish storytelling at its best with comedy concealing a powerful undertone of hurt and heartache that is hinted at throughout. It’s raw and relatable and immediately transported me back to my teenage years with the girls singing excerpts of some songs of the time. Notably Tainted Love (oh the memories!) and yet tainted love can totally sum up the underlying theme of the play.
Well that is exactly what I was hoping for when I went to see the fab Sally Morgan in Dartford last night. I have been wanting to go see her show for a long time now.
For those of you that don’t know, Sally Morgan is a ‘medium’/ ‘psychic’ or whatever you choose to call it. She claims to have had this ‘gift’ as she calls it all her life and recalled stories last night of how neighbour’s would knock on her door and ask her mum to get Sally to look at pictures etc of loved ones who had passed away.
Since my Dad passed away in 2002 it does make you wonder whether there is something else when we leave this place. People need a bit of closure, proof or just something to put your mind at rest.
When we got there I found the very lovely John (her hubby), it was evident this man has a fan club of his very own! All the women wanted their pics taken with him and shamelessly I was no different!
Anyway we popped our photos we had brought into the box and hoped for the best (Sally will pick out pictures on stage during the show to help with messages). I clutched my Dad’s old pocket watch in my hand, something he carried with him ALL the time, and said in my head ‘ Best you bloody show up tonight!’. I will admit that every time Sally said ‘I have a gentleman here’ my heart jumped in my mouth and then when she said another person’s name I did curse a bit under my breath. I know you would hardly believe a lady like me could be capable. I willed and willed and willed.
I sat in amazement how accurate she seemed to be for some of the audience. One woman on the large screen could literally not stop shaking when she talked about her mum and dad who were looking after her son who had passed as a baby! Then the last message had people in tears. Even the best actress could not have played a part better than the recipient. She was visibly shaken when she picked up about her adoption, the fact her birth mother was still alive but her adoptive mother was in spirit, but that there had been a tangle over who was going to adopt her, the birth mother’s sister or her eventual adoptive mum!! Seriously you could not have made it up. The lady was in tears and just managed a gasp every time Sally mentioned another name accurately for her.
Now I am a believer (as you may have gathered) but this was completely random, accurate and just amazing. There were times that she told people that the message was not for them, so it seemed she doesn’t try and make the message fit she will just tell you that she doesn’t think it is for you.
To be honest going to see one of Sally’s shows is like going to a family gathering where the token mad auntie stands up and tells stories before flashing her knickers at the disco!! She is completely down to earth, heart warmingly normal, very funny to the point she can spook herself with what she says! She engages with people with unbelievable ease and talks to you like she has known you for years.
So did I get a message?
No………. *no, sobs into my coffee*- completely disappointed for myself but definitely not in the show.
However, afterwards I was lucky enough to grab a signed copy of her book (and some DVD’s that I will do a giveaway with soon) and get to have a chat with her.
She took the time to sign tickets, programmes or copies of her books depending on what you had ( again no pressure to buy the books etc). She was so easy to chat to and didn’t rush you along but actually seemed interested in what you said. I did mention her lovely hubby John had donated a few bits for the blog she declared:
‘ Oh your one of those ‘Professional Bloggers’…..’
‘Erm….yes of course I am- very professional LOL’
** I would like to say she seems surrounded by a fab family team too. As I was queuing a theatre representative came up to John and asked if he could speed things along to which he got the rely:
‘No I don’t think so, she will go as quickly as she goes- this is all part of the show for her and the fans, so no I don’t think I will tell them they cant talk to her’ – Good For You John!! ( this is obviously why all the women love him)
This is totally what people want, the chance to have a minute or two with her, and to be honest she seemed to be loving chatting to everyone, and with a hubby watching her back as John did I think she will be doing this for a very long time to come.
Now the question is……….How soon can I go again…………*scuttles off to track down tickets*
I will be running a giveaway on the blog in the next week or so with the DVD’s and signed book from the show- so keep a look out.
Check out her website here *****NOT A SPONSORED POST*****
I had a wicked night at Wicked courtesy of the very lovely Olivia from Think Jam!!
After the experience of taking my boys to the annual Wicked day back in October I decided that I was not going to waste these tickets on the kids who had grumbled most of the day………..harsh, yes I know.
So I decided these would be perfect for a girlie night out- Oh Yes!! And a great girlie night was had by all.
I had taken my mum to this many moons ago for her 60th birthday and had a fantastic time. I absolutely love this show and was just so excited to be going again. However, when someone else arranges it for you I always worry that the tickets either wont be there or that the seats will be rubbish!! I was unbelievably surprised to be sitting literally 6 rows from the front!!! I could not believe my luck ( these sorts of things never normally happen to me).
Two of my friends had never seen the show before so it was a real delight to take them and introduce them to the phenomenon that is ‘Defying Gravity’ in it’s own right. I think I can safely say they are now complete fans of the show. One of my friends had me in stitches throughout the show with the changeovers in characters……………..to the Tinman and the Scarecrow. It was hilarious ”Oh look it’s the Tin man………….Oh look it’ the Scarecrow……….Oh how clever!!” ( LOL it is the prequel to the Wizard of OZ after all!!! )
Although I knew the show there were things in there that I hadn’t fully remembered which was a real treat too. I have to say that Matt Willis did a fantastic job as the male lead.( a conversation that went something like- isn’t he from Busted or one of those groups? With a reply that went………Oh who’s been busted?) Garlinda was still as mental……….toss toss! Defying Gravity did just that and just blew us away.
Truly it still lives up to all the expectations of being one of the best (if not the best) show up in town. FANTASTIC
Have you seen it? What would your favourite show be?