Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Night of Dark Passion

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

A Night of Dark Passion

Article excerpt

Byline: RACHEL HALLIBURTON

The Clearing Tricycle

HELEN Edmundson's The Clearing chronicles one of the most shocking episodes in British history. It takes us back 350 years to the Irish genocide that marked Oliver Cromwell's grim determination to replace the Catholics with his own loyal English subjects.

Politics today hardly lacks examples of religious and political strife, yet does the theatre company Shared Experience manage to bring alive such 17th century atrocities?

In this earthily poetic production, the company portrays the agonies suffered by an Irishwoman who marries a young English settler and has a child with him, only to discover that Cromwell's poisoned Protestantism corrodes both her husband's independence and their marriage.

Edmundson's prowess as an adaptor is without question - her Mill on the Floss returned last year in triumph to the West End - and the poetry in her language lifts her own work way beyond historical didacticism. …

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