As the audience walk into Gorgeous Theatre’s second production, Alex paints her name and
those of the characters on the back wall. Noel Cahill’s Alex And intrigues the audience from
‘Alex And’ tells the story of Alex (Helen McGrath) as she leads her everyday day life and
interacts with Friend, Parent and Partner (Ciaran Treanor, Amy Kellett and Andrea Bolger
respectively). Her emotions sway from bliss to anger, from sadness to confusion, and while
it does she manages to control the emotions of the audience, keeping them aligned with her
own. Well, some of the way at least.
Alex is both the plays protagonist and the puppet master, controlling the other characters,
but still to some extent being controlled by them and the dichotomy between the two at
times perplexes. The piece kicks off well, keeping the energy high and with strong performances from all,
however it soon becomes difficult to follow. The language fluctuates between that of
children and deep metaphor as scenes blend together and interact, yet it remains rather
What it lacks in its story it is made up for by very good use of the stage throughout the
production, being very visually pleasing to watch. They use repetition nicely, particularly
their oeuvre of breakfast songs, and each character is both unique and relatable. The lights
and sound were simple but effective and the movement between the characters on
occasion was well choreographed, heightening the interactions.
Unfortunately, the show lasts longer than it should as the peak comes too early. After this
point the energy drops. The remainder feels rather tiring until eventually it stops abruptly
and leaves a few open ends.
Despite this it displays some nice ideas, its major flaw being its length. However, if it were
shortened down and developed a bit more it could have a lot more potential.
Alex And runs nightly at 8pm in the Teacher’s Club until March 17th .
by Johnny Walsh