With a heart as cold as the blustery winds blowing people in and out the door, An Irish Carol by Matthew J. Keenan finds David, a pub’s miserly owner, confronted by guests of his past and glimpses of his future on a chilly Christmas Eve. This modern-day A Christmas Carol adaption, directed by Mark A. Rhea, looks at one man’s withdrawal from the world at the expense of others and challenges us to embrace the ghosts of our Christmases present, past, and future.
Director Mark A. Rhea and Assistant Director Sheri S. Herren laid out this simmering holiday reflection simply and without distraction in the moments that really mattered. Using silence and empty space to their advantage, their direction drew out the pulse that connected each scene and had the audience holding their breath. Paired with a spectacularly intricate set by Set Designer, Matthew J. Keenan and Properties & Set Dressing Designer Cindy Landrum Jacobs, the spirit and chill of the holidays quite literally was all-surrounding.
A reflective and more than occasionally foul-mouthed show that picks at the choices we make to (dis)connect, An Irish Carol at the Keegan Theatre once again proves that the past is not gone, the future is not final, and no one is beyond hope.