Martin McDonagh’s blindfolded fairytale The Pillowman has been a gleeful, award-winning triumph in London and New York. McDonagh first took the theatre world by its throat with the Leenane Trilogy, and we had a live-wire success with The Lieutenant of Inishmore in 2003. Then Company B played host to his gruesomely funny celebration of our irrepressible urge to tell tales.
Katurian is in an interrogation cell and he’s not sure why, but he thinks it might have something to do with what he’s written. Enter a pair of nasty cops and a wide-eyed brother, and McDonagh’s deer-in-the-headlights storytelling unfolds with all the suspense and horror of a fabulous thriller.
The Pillowman is as black as comedy gets: hair-raising and blow-by-blow funny. Secretly it might be about the power of tenderness and thoughtfulness. Or it might be about the deadly responsibilities of artists. Either way, it’s a captivating and perversely entertaining experiment with the dangerous power of those ageless words, ‘Once upon a time…’
Craig Ilott created a sensation with his production of Hedwig and the Angry Inch and then he made his much-anticipated Company B debut with The Pillowman. And the marvellous Damon Herriman eagerly took the plunge. This is the kind of horrible fun we know we shouldn’t really have (but do).
By Martin McDonough
Director Craig Ilott
Set Designer Nicholas Dare
Costume Designer Jo Briscoe
Lighting Designer Niklas Pajanti
Composer & Sound Designer Jethro Woodward
Assistant Sound Designer Chris Mercer
Fight Director Kyle Rowling
Spellbinding stunner of a play.The New York Times
Unsavoury, disturbing, horribly funny and strangely moving. Seriously good.Sunday Telegraph
Treads the line between comedy and horror.The Australian
The play’s speculative fuge about the…ethics of art… is not without tantalizing parallels to the local here and now.The Sydney Morning Herald