TALES FROM A Lost Uncle is a new theatre production from Macnas which is due to be staged in Galway in April, but a brief performance from the play took place in Macnas’ Fisheries Field workshop last week.
The play centres on a poet called Orfeo, who comes into an inheritance from a mysterious uncle. As part of that inheritance he receives a magical musical instrument which has a trance like effect on all who hear it.
There are many people who want a slice (or all of ) Orfeo’s inheritance, so to protect himself he must carry a gun at all times. This though, does not prevent him from having to stand trial and suffer being ridiculed by those who pursue him.
Last Thursday’s performance from two sections of Tales From A Lost Uncle hint this will be a very dark and slightly surreal drama. The scenes were performed by three actors, accompanied by three musicians. Descriptions of what the stage sets will look like and the characters actions were provided by a narrator.
Macnas showed the invited audience enough for us to want to know how Orfeo came into the inheritance, why he is being pursued, and what will happen to him. It certainly is a show to look forward to and will hopefully live up to the promise of that ‘taster’ performance.
Last year’s parade was called Orfeo and it appears the company may use many of the props and creations from the parade. This is welcome as it would be a shame if those creations were to lie unused.
This was perhaps underlined by Macnas staging a short parade after the play, featuring the Irish elk, rabbit, and horse from Orfeo, accompanied by three girls - whose costumes and actions were reminiscent of early Adam Ant videos - reciting poems.
Then in the middle of the Fisheries Field, a structure resembling a lighthouse was seen, with an electric lamp turning around and scanning the area. Smoke drifted across, creating the impression of a fog stricken sea, from which emerged (Macnas volunteers carrying ) a ghostly ship and a luminous stork.
When they had passed by small fires were lit on poles across the Fisheries Field, as the lighthouse continued to scan, creating a magical and serene conclusion to a wonderful night’s entertainment.