Willy Russell's EDUCATING RITA Comes to Dublin
Wimpole Productions presents Educating Rita by Willy Russell at dlr Mill Theatre Dundrum, Dublin.
This well-loved comedy by Willy Russell was made famous by the popular 1983 film starring Michael Caine and Julie Walters. It explores universal themes of social class, education, personal development and authenticity.
Rita is a brash, working-class hairdresser on a personal quest to educate herself for a better life. When she enrols in an Open University course she is paired with Frank, a burned-out, disillusioned professor who has become somewhat reliant on a bottle of scotch to get him through the day. Through a series of both hilarious and moving conversations, an unlikely friendship grows, with each one helping the other to rediscover their zest for life.
Having charmed Dublin audiences as Eliza Dolittle and Henry Higgins in 'My Fair Lady' at the Gaiety Theatre over a decade ago, actors Róisín Sullivan and Garry Mountaine reunite to present this alternative Pygmalion-inspired play; once again teaming up to interpret the characters of the knowledgeable professor and his unlikely protégé.
"I have always loved 'Rita' as a play because both characters are so 'real' " said Garry. "And I suppose they should be, because when Willy Russell put pen to paper he was almost writing his autobiography, as the entire two hours is based on his own experiences as a hairdresser in Liverpool, while he was studying at night for a degree with the Open University; I'm sure that the comedy almost wrote itself ! "
"This play is as relevant today as when it was written and first performed back in the 80's " said Róisín. "Rita is one of those 'ah God love her' girls, who you just really want to see do well and triumph in life, even though you know the odds are stacked right up against her. If there is one message I love about this play, it's 'never underestimate the underdog', especially when that underdog is a strong female with unshakable determination and a dream worth pursuing."