Fell times for Little Theatre

Prepare to be amazed and amused as Athlone Little Theatre gears up for one of the most powerful and hilarious plays seen on the local stage in many a year.

I Do Not Like Thee, Doctor Fell is the classic that launched the career of Bernard Farrell, one of Ireland’s best loved playwrights. It’s the story of a group therapy session that goes hilariously and tragically wrong as a bunch of unhappy campers are both terrorised and ridiculed by the mysterious stranger known as Joe Fell.

It’s a play where nobody is what they seem, the laughs come thick and fast and the audience never knows what’s coming next.

This must see production is also a directorial debut for talented actor and long time drama stalwart Billy Nott. Billy has assembled a stellar cast of sparkling newcomers and experienced hands, for what promises to be a most unique and enjoyable production.

As Suzy Bernstein, the group therapy leader who claims to be American, accomplished actress Aileen Keena is making her first appearance on the Little Theatre stage. She’s joined by Jason Gill, last seen as Myles in The Colleen Bawn, as Joe Fell, who sets about destroying the session from the start but whose motives will keep you guessing right to the end.

John McGlynn, fresh from a tour de force role as Teddy Heelan in ‘Big Maggie,’ plays Roger, the absurdly enthusiastic therapy junkie whose pretensions will have the audience in stitches. Chrissie Keane’s performance as the batty Rita promises to be one of the most memorable comedy turns of recent years. Maria Griffin delighted audiences with her debut as Gert in Big Maggie before Christmas. She will be an utter joy as Maureen, the scatty wife of aggressive builder Peter, played by another talented newcomer Albert Gillick.

The cast is completed by the excellent Ronan Flynn as the sardonic caretaker Paddy, who provides a sharp contrast to the lunacy of the “head shrinkers,” as he calls them.

This hilarious and insightful production remains as relevant today as when it was first performed by the likes of Liam Neeson and Tom Hickey. It opens on Sunday February 28 for six nights and is definitely one not to be missed.

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