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October 20 , 2010

Reid Plays: 1

Did You ... the One About the Irishman?; Tea in a China Cup; Joyriders; Belle of Belfast City; Clowns


A collection of plays by one of Ireland's finest dramatists of the 80s and 90s

Tea in a China Cup focuses on the differing experiences of three generations of women in a working-class Belfast Protestant family, a tapestry of tales linked by the central character Beth, torn between the influence of traditions and the rejection of gentility and respectability. Did You Here the One About the Irishman? shows how both nationalists and loyalists are dependent on one another; Joyriders, grew out of the work Reid did with residents at the notorious Davis Flats estate and is structured around the day-to-day activities of four Catholic teenagers on a youth training scheme running at a now-disused textile mill in Belfast and plays on the idea of Britain taking a joy-ride through Ireland; The Belle of Belfast city shows Dolly, a former music-hall star whose bawdy songs and unconventional antics conjure a magical Belfast far removed from that represented by her nephew Jack, a hardline loyalist politician. My Name, Shall I Tell You My name? is "Fierce, poignant...a formidable portrait of intransigent, archaic patriotism" (The Times) and Clowns (the sequel to Joyriders) is a "warmhearted, compassionate play". (The Guardian)

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