“The Freedom of The City”

“Sociopolitical themes are invariably woven into the fabric of the great contemporary Irish dramatist Brian Friel’s works, but few are as direct in their focus as “The Freedom of the City,” which is being given A TRENCHANT REVIVAL at the Irish Repertory Theater. Staged by Ciaran O’Reilly with a firm handle on the narrative’s time-shuffling structure and a stinging clarity that illuminates this 1973 play’s multiple perspectives, THE DRAMA STEADILY TIGHTENS ITS GRIP, right up to its shattering conclusion. Given that the outcome is revealed from the start, and that there are somewhat didactic detours along the way, THE PLAY’S EMOTIONAL IMPACT IS ESPECIALLY NOTEWORTHY. Those three lead performances — Ms. Seymour’s the most quietly wrenching — put a haunting human face on the Troubles in Northern Ireland.”
— The New York Times

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