The Humours of Bandon is a coming of age story written and performed by Margaret McAuliffe and it is really rather wonderful. Young girls and Irish dancing are a natural combination and mostly all the public sees is the sweet innocence being played out in various halls and centres up and down the length of Ireland. But behind it apparently lies a seething cauldron of jealousy, commitment, connivance, dedication and enlightenment.
Margaret McAuliffe brings to life the story of one young girl's experience in this crucible which both makes and forms her, but not I suspect in the way her teachers, friends and fellow competitors ever thought it would. The trials and tribulations of both being a young girl and trying to become the Irish Open Champion (which turns out not to be that open) are brought to life on the simplest of sets: a table and a few minor props.
An array of characters appear before us, each of them interacting with our protagonist at different levels and to different degrees of success. Each of them is beautifully formed and memorable either for their humanity and sometimes for their lack of it.
The show is well formed, the narrative is compelling, the storyline ringing with truth and personal experience. There is also a tension that builds during the show as varying forces both internal and external begin to apply themselves to McAuliffe's central character.
It is also heart warming to see that sometimes the young see further and better than all the elders around them. Recognising the truth of a situation, and knowing what the answer is. I can say no more lest I spoil the show for you, and you must see this show.
Aug 8-13, 15-20, 22-27 (18:30)