The Cripple of Inishmaan

Critics

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90 %

Reviews: 20

Audience

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Reviews: 1

Inspired by the real-life filming of the documentary Man of Aran, Olivier Award-winning playwright Martin McDonagh's dark comedy is set on the small Aran Island community of Inishmaan (Inis Meáin) off the Western Coast of Ireland in 1934, where the inhabitants are excited to learn of a Hollywood film crew's arrival in neighboring Inishmore (Inis Mór) to make a documentary about life on the islands. “Cripple” Billy Claven, eager to escape the gossip, poverty and boredom of Inishmaan, vies for a part in the film, and to everyone's surprise, the orphan and outcast gets his chance... or so some believe. Antaeus Theatre Company presents a fully partner-cast production, presenting two equally excellent but very different sets of actors at alternating performances. Jan. 17-March 11; $15-$35; Kiki & David Gindler Performing Arts Center, 110 East Broadway, Glendale, CA 91205; (818) 506-1983 or www.antaeus.org.

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Reviews

"It's rather amazing how most actors shine and sparkle in this double-cast production, an Antaeus institution given that many thespians can be called away for film work at a moment's notice. As is usually the case, it limits the ensemble's cohesion — all it takes is one or two meh actors to off-balance a show, which is the case here."

sweet-sour - Tony Frankel - Stage and Cinema - ...read full review


"McDonagh's play is, for the most part, populated with clichéd, two-dimensional characters, but thanks to Steven Robman's excellent direction, his superb cast do the best they can with this flawed but entertaining tragi-comedy. Matthew Grondin gives an endearing and sensitive performance as Billy, the eponymous central character which, unsurprisingly, is the most well-defined of them all."

sweet - Pauline Adamek - Arts Beat LA - ...read full review


"Of the multiple acting companies performing the play for Antaeus, the Yalla-Mallows ensemble is terrific, hilariously portraying rural life in Ireland... - RECOMMENDED  "

sweet - Ezra Bitterman - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Eric A Gordon
"Almost without exception, McDonagh's characters are highly flawed—“damaged” might be the more contemporary term—given to acts and words of cruelty. Obviously Billy is not the only “cripple” in the play: His fellow residents of Inishmaan are graphically rendered psychological outsiders. In that sense, the playwright poses an astutely aggressive counter-proposition to the romanticized version of Irish life and poverty playgoers and moviegoers are often exposed to. One subject that gets mentioned more than once in rather explicit detail is priestly abuse of children, a topic not so much in the public discourse when the play was written. Perhaps the play had a role in opening up that inquiry."

sweet - Eric Gordon - People's World - ...read full review


Rob Stevens
"Steven Robman has deftly directed the many scenes and his cast is a finely meshed ensemble. There are plenty of laughs unearthed by this cast, as well as some lovely, heartfelt emotions. The Cripple of Inishmaan is a lovely way to spend a couple of hours with some truly colorful characters."

sweet - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


Erin Conley
"McDonagh's work is definitely not for everyone—it is a specific brand of humor that is often mean, and one of the character decisions in act two comes a bit out of left field, feeling unearned and included for the sake of shock value. But overall, this is a solid production that succeeds the most in its depiction of quirky small town life, accentuating how it takes all kinds of people to make up a community—even terrible ones."

sweet-sour - Erin Conley - On Stage & Screen - ...read full review


Leigh Kennicott
"In setting Cripple of Inishmaan on a remote island in 1934, McDonagh distances us enough that we can laugh at the foibles of an isolated population, while decrying the violence in Inishmaan's daily lives. It's hilarious to watch when the town gossip brings news of a visiting movie company from Hollywood, and the lives of Inishmaan's townspeople are thrown into turmoil. As always, Antaeus doubles its actors. To director Steve Robman's credit, the performers work seamlessly across both casts as the picture of Irish country-life heaves into focus."

sweet - Leigh Kennicott - ShowMag.com - ...read full review


"Antaeus Theatre Company's The Cripple of Inishmaan could be celebrated as ‘the most wonderful play of their season'. The silliest of expressions, but considering its ultimately delightful nature, it fits. - Recommended"

sweet - Tracey Paleo - Gia on the Move - ...read full review


"Director Steven Robman has assembled a remarkable cast, each actor finding nuances in their roles... Hysterical, haunting, and challenging, Antaeus' production of The Cripple of Inishmaan is not to be missed."

sweet - Jonas Schwartz - Arts in LA - ...read full review


Travis Michael Holder
"It seems lucky to me the six plays of Martin McDonagh's pair of County Galway trilogies surfaced in a time before the current climate where the only way to not offend anyone is to write about trees. Today, without having achieved classic status, there would surely be some group or another outside the Kiki and David Gindler Performing Arts Center carrying signs of protest. Still, if that ever did happen, all the good folks at Anteaus would need to do is invite them in and offer them seats, for once anyone begins to understand the heart and endearing nature lurking below the crusty surface of ignorant inappropriateness that dogs residents of Inishmaan Island, they will surely abandon their signs and applaud this stellar production along with the rest of us."

sweet - Travis Michael Holder - Ticket Holders LA - ...read full review


"The play receives a hit-and-miss treatment from director Steven Robman, who doesn't separate the gritty from the twee in this checkered production."

sweet-sour - F Kathleen Foley - LA Times - ...read full review


"This superb cast under the excellent direction of Steven Robman, brings the play to vivid life with great humor and superb dialect work that captures the music of the Irish accent (kudos to dialect coach Lauren Lovett). The comedy is sharp and physical and keeps the audience giggling and guffawing except when affect takes command."

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


"What with the simplicity of the characters and the odd interchanges, it's a play that one can appreciate for its superficial romp and then, re-examine for the beauty of the language and the sincerity of the bittersweet characters."

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


"Brilliantly directed by Steven Robman – who has managed to help mold each character on Inishmaan into his own very special persona – no two characters are even remotely interchangeable. Each stands out as a unique human being – and yet they all play together so well even as the hurtful words fly. Kudos to every actor in the show, each etched into a fine engraving. Kudos too to John Iacovelli, whose scenic design is breathtaking; Garry Lennon, whose costumes are perfect; and to all the production crew who make Irish Inishmaan come alive. Dialect coach Lauren Lovett also deserves a hand. The cast sound more Irish than the Irish."

sweet - Elaine Mura - LA Splash - ...read full review


"Director Steven Robman gets some inspired performances from his cast, but the pacing lags a bit at times and the Irish accents are somewhat variable. ...The Cripple of Inishmaan is a dark little gem of a play, and if this production isn't perfect, it's still a nasty, mean-spirited delight."

sweet-sour - Terry Morgan - Talking' Broadway - ...read full review


"RECOMMENDED The script is full of twist and turns, some shocking, others heartbreaking, with one very hopeful one right at the end. The Cripple of Inishmaan makes no attempt to mask the blatant discrimination its characters have against the physically disabled, and in so doing exposes a very ugly side of human nature."

sweet - Julia Stier - Stage Raw - ...read full review


"COMPLEXITY ABOUNDS… characters that challenge our concept of what it means to be considered likable, what we might define as a hero, and what the cost of a dream might be. And they are funny to watch–the things they say will make you wince and chuckle in spite of yourself… The moment you lay eyes on the set, you can almost smell the sea air and feel the damp stones against your skin."

sweet - Christine Deitner - The Theatre Times - ...read full review


"My first (and long overdue) experience at Antaeus Theatre was thoroughly enjoyable! I'm a fan of playwright Martin McDonagh, and this production enhances his well-earned reputation as a black-comedy expert with empathy for his eccentric characters. First-rate acting and ensemble work are complemented by the evocative stage design — set, lighting, sound, wardrobe, props are all spot on. I'd love to go back to see the partner cast in action!"

sweet - Robin Roth


Patrick Chavis
"The script is thought provoking but very down to earth. You're never thinking, “oh that's clever that's something you would hear in a play.”"

sweet - Patrick Chavis - LA Theatre Bites - ...read full review


Gil Kaan
"Antaeus' THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN - A Feckin' Fine Production! Add Martin McDonagh's THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN to the already lengthy resumé of stellar productions that the always dependable Antaeus Theatre Company manages to assemble on their stage. Steven Robman sure-handedly directs his talented Irish-brogued ensemble of seven (The Fripple Frapples cast of the double castings) at a quick, smooth pace; vividly illustrating McDonagh's smart, witty and brutal tale based on the real-life filming of the 1934 documentary Man of Aran."

sweet - Gil Kaan - Broadway World - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"The residents of Inishmaan may seem a hard lot to love at first glance, but first impressions can be deceiving. Like Martin McDonagh's The Cripple Of Inishmaan itself, they end up a hard lot to resist."

sweet - Steven Stanley - Stage Scene LA - ...read full review


"It's rather amazing how most actors shine and sparkle in this double-cast production, an Antaeus institution given that many thespians can be called away for film work at a moment's notice. As is usually the case, it limits the ensemble's cohesion — all it takes is one or two meh actors to off-balance a show, which is the case here."

sweet-sour - Tony Frankel - Stage and Cinema - ...read full review


"McDonagh's play is, for the most part, populated with clichéd, two-dimensional characters, but thanks to Steven Robman's excellent direction, his superb cast do the best they can with this flawed but entertaining tragi-comedy. Matthew Grondin gives an endearing and sensitive performance as Billy, the eponymous central character which, unsurprisingly, is the most well-defined of them all."

sweet - Pauline Adamek - Arts Beat LA - ...read full review


"Of the multiple acting companies performing the play for Antaeus, the Yalla-Mallows ensemble is terrific, hilariously portraying rural life in Ireland... - RECOMMENDED  "

sweet - Ezra Bitterman - Stage Raw - ...read full review


Eric A Gordon
"Almost without exception, McDonagh's characters are highly flawed—“damaged” might be the more contemporary term—given to acts and words of cruelty. Obviously Billy is not the only “cripple” in the play: His fellow residents of Inishmaan are graphically rendered psychological outsiders. In that sense, the playwright poses an astutely aggressive counter-proposition to the romanticized version of Irish life and poverty playgoers and moviegoers are often exposed to. One subject that gets mentioned more than once in rather explicit detail is priestly abuse of children, a topic not so much in the public discourse when the play was written. Perhaps the play had a role in opening up that inquiry."

sweet - Eric Gordon - People's World - ...read full review


Rob Stevens
"Steven Robman has deftly directed the many scenes and his cast is a finely meshed ensemble. There are plenty of laughs unearthed by this cast, as well as some lovely, heartfelt emotions. The Cripple of Inishmaan is a lovely way to spend a couple of hours with some truly colorful characters."

sweet - Rob Stevens - Haines His Way - ...read full review


Erin Conley
"McDonagh's work is definitely not for everyone—it is a specific brand of humor that is often mean, and one of the character decisions in act two comes a bit out of left field, feeling unearned and included for the sake of shock value. But overall, this is a solid production that succeeds the most in its depiction of quirky small town life, accentuating how it takes all kinds of people to make up a community—even terrible ones."

sweet-sour - Erin Conley - On Stage & Screen - ...read full review


Leigh Kennicott
"In setting Cripple of Inishmaan on a remote island in 1934, McDonagh distances us enough that we can laugh at the foibles of an isolated population, while decrying the violence in Inishmaan's daily lives. It's hilarious to watch when the town gossip brings news of a visiting movie company from Hollywood, and the lives of Inishmaan's townspeople are thrown into turmoil. As always, Antaeus doubles its actors. To director Steve Robman's credit, the performers work seamlessly across both casts as the picture of Irish country-life heaves into focus."

sweet - Leigh Kennicott - ShowMag.com - ...read full review


"Antaeus Theatre Company's The Cripple of Inishmaan could be celebrated as ‘the most wonderful play of their season'. The silliest of expressions, but considering its ultimately delightful nature, it fits. - Recommended"

sweet - Tracey Paleo - Gia on the Move - ...read full review


"Director Steven Robman has assembled a remarkable cast, each actor finding nuances in their roles... Hysterical, haunting, and challenging, Antaeus' production of The Cripple of Inishmaan is not to be missed."

sweet - Jonas Schwartz - Arts in LA - ...read full review


Travis Michael Holder
"It seems lucky to me the six plays of Martin McDonagh's pair of County Galway trilogies surfaced in a time before the current climate where the only way to not offend anyone is to write about trees. Today, without having achieved classic status, there would surely be some group or another outside the Kiki and David Gindler Performing Arts Center carrying signs of protest. Still, if that ever did happen, all the good folks at Anteaus would need to do is invite them in and offer them seats, for once anyone begins to understand the heart and endearing nature lurking below the crusty surface of ignorant inappropriateness that dogs residents of Inishmaan Island, they will surely abandon their signs and applaud this stellar production along with the rest of us."

sweet - Travis Michael Holder - Ticket Holders LA - ...read full review


"The play receives a hit-and-miss treatment from director Steven Robman, who doesn't separate the gritty from the twee in this checkered production."

sweet-sour - F Kathleen Foley - LA Times - ...read full review


"This superb cast under the excellent direction of Steven Robman, brings the play to vivid life with great humor and superb dialect work that captures the music of the Irish accent (kudos to dialect coach Lauren Lovett). The comedy is sharp and physical and keeps the audience giggling and guffawing except when affect takes command."

sweet - Paul Myrvold - Theatre Notes - ...read full review


"What with the simplicity of the characters and the odd interchanges, it's a play that one can appreciate for its superficial romp and then, re-examine for the beauty of the language and the sincerity of the bittersweet characters."

sweet - Michael Sheehan - On Stage Los Angeles - ...read full review


"Brilliantly directed by Steven Robman – who has managed to help mold each character on Inishmaan into his own very special persona – no two characters are even remotely interchangeable. Each stands out as a unique human being – and yet they all play together so well even as the hurtful words fly. Kudos to every actor in the show, each etched into a fine engraving. Kudos too to John Iacovelli, whose scenic design is breathtaking; Garry Lennon, whose costumes are perfect; and to all the production crew who make Irish Inishmaan come alive. Dialect coach Lauren Lovett also deserves a hand. The cast sound more Irish than the Irish."

sweet - Elaine Mura - LA Splash - ...read full review


"Director Steven Robman gets some inspired performances from his cast, but the pacing lags a bit at times and the Irish accents are somewhat variable. ...The Cripple of Inishmaan is a dark little gem of a play, and if this production isn't perfect, it's still a nasty, mean-spirited delight."

sweet-sour - Terry Morgan - Talking' Broadway - ...read full review


"RECOMMENDED The script is full of twist and turns, some shocking, others heartbreaking, with one very hopeful one right at the end. The Cripple of Inishmaan makes no attempt to mask the blatant discrimination its characters have against the physically disabled, and in so doing exposes a very ugly side of human nature."

sweet - Julia Stier - Stage Raw - ...read full review


"COMPLEXITY ABOUNDS… characters that challenge our concept of what it means to be considered likable, what we might define as a hero, and what the cost of a dream might be. And they are funny to watch–the things they say will make you wince and chuckle in spite of yourself… The moment you lay eyes on the set, you can almost smell the sea air and feel the damp stones against your skin."

sweet - Christine Deitner - The Theatre Times - ...read full review


Patrick Chavis
"The script is thought provoking but very down to earth. You're never thinking, “oh that's clever that's something you would hear in a play.”"

sweet - Patrick Chavis - LA Theatre Bites - ...read full review


Gil Kaan
"Antaeus' THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN - A Feckin' Fine Production! Add Martin McDonagh's THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN to the already lengthy resumé of stellar productions that the always dependable Antaeus Theatre Company manages to assemble on their stage. Steven Robman sure-handedly directs his talented Irish-brogued ensemble of seven (The Fripple Frapples cast of the double castings) at a quick, smooth pace; vividly illustrating McDonagh's smart, witty and brutal tale based on the real-life filming of the 1934 documentary Man of Aran."

sweet - Gil Kaan - Broadway World - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"The residents of Inishmaan may seem a hard lot to love at first glance, but first impressions can be deceiving. Like Martin McDonagh's The Cripple Of Inishmaan itself, they end up a hard lot to resist."

sweet - Steven Stanley - Stage Scene LA - ...read full review


"My first (and long overdue) experience at Antaeus Theatre was thoroughly enjoyable! I'm a fan of playwright Martin McDonagh, and this production enhances his well-earned reputation as a black-comedy expert with empathy for his eccentric characters. First-rate acting and ensemble work are complemented by the evocative stage design — set, lighting, sound, wardrobe, props are all spot on. I'd love to go back to see the partner cast in action!"

sweet - Robin Roth