Review: FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND at Corrib Theatre

This gorgeous production runs at Alberta House through May 19.

By: May. 10, 2024
Review: FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND at Corrib Theatre
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I am sorry, my fellow Portland theatre fans, that I wasn’t able to see FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND earlier so I could give you more time to get to this beautiful play, now running as a co-production between Corrib Theatre and Alberta House. There are only a few performances left. If you can, I highly recommend you see one.

FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND, a world premiere by Ken Yoshikawa, was commissioned by Corrib. Drawing on Irish folklore, it tells the story of a man who, in an effort to conquer death, puts the whole world out of whack. His descendants, members of the fairy kingdom, and other mythical creatures must team up to get things back in order. The play has many thematic layers – it deals with repairing damage done by our ancestors, the human impact on the environment, and our relationship with technology, to name just a few. That makes it sound dark, but it’s not – lightness and humor provide ample balance.

For this production, director Holly Griffith has mastered the art of doing a lot with very little. With just a few set pieces (designed by Kyra Sanford) and lighting (by Kelly Terry), the vast Alberta House becomes an entirely new world. Several worlds, really.

The three versatile performers – Claire Aldridge, Olivia Mathews, and Joellen Sweeney – are wonderful in what appear to be very demanding roles. The story is told as much in movement as it is in words. It’s not quite a dance piece, but it’s not far off. While Sweeney sings, plays the guitar, and provides foley-style sound effects, Aldridge and Mathews show their impressive ability to shapeshift.

Overall, I thought FROM A HOLE IN THE GROUND was gorgeous. It’s a play for lovers of myths and fairytales, movement-based storytelling, and beautiful things in general. The play runs through May 19. Details and tickets here.


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