Closed 1h 30m
Rebel in the Soul

Rebel in the Soul NYC Reviews and Tickets

(7 Reviews)
Members say
Relevant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing, Slow, Intelligent

About the Show

Irish Rep presents the world premiere of this new history-based drama about the political maneuvering of three passionate men in '50s Ireland regarding postnatal and children's health care.

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Member Reviews (7)

Disappointing, Slow, Good acting, Intelligent

See it if Kirwin's docu-drama about post Irish social politics it too cluncky to have the potent impact it should. Monologue style kills dramatic pace

Don't see it if Moore's leaden direction slows already wordy nature of piece. Keating's Archbishop ignites whenever he's on stage which alas is not enough

Ambitious, Relevant, Slow, Thought-provoking

See it if you have an interest in Irish history and/or are particularly intrigued by health care issues.

Don't see it if you are looking for dramatic conflict. The differing opinions are diluted by the use of monologues, rather than by conflicting dialogue.

Critic Reviews (6)

April 18th, 2017

"'Rebel' is a tale chock-full of relevance, so why does this world premiere fail to stir the soul? Some of it has to do with the way Kirwan introduces us to the story: A series of extended monologues...exhaustively establish the exposition before any characters are actually put in dialogue...Fitzgerald's performance occasionally betrays Kirwan's lazy construction...Director Moore at least makes the context of Irish politics clear in a mostly ham-fisted production."
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April 19th, 2017

"If the playwright had really let his characters engage in the cut and thrust of ideas and personalities, struggling over a piece of legislation that is really a proxy war for a nation's soul, how much more gripping 'Rebel in the Soul' would be. The business of giving each character great big dollops of exposition turns the theatre into a lecture hall, leaving not enough room for the intriguing conflicts at the drama's center...If you're going to write a play, for heaven's sake, write a play."
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April 23rd, 2017

“If this all sounds a bit over-intellectual, well, so is the play. Though the intelligent script may be based on real people, they are forever describing themselves--and each other--in ways that real people never do. Think about practically any play by George Bernard Shaw, and you begin to get the picture. And although Moore, as director, has done much to compensate for the tiny stage space on which the expansive story unfolds..., she isn't abetted very much by her actors.”
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April 20th, 2017

“Kirwan employs the monologue as his chief dramatic device which allows his trinity of principals to exercise their verbal prowess and argue their specific political views…However, a string of monologues can also result in a loss of emotional power. While Kirwan does punctuate his script with more dynamic interchanges, the piece never completely flies. That said, there are powerful moments…A solid diversion for those who like their theater with a twist of politics.”
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April 18th, 2017

"It is a politically charged drama that's both informative and compelling. Patrick Fitzgerald plays Dr. Noël Browne with brilliant intensity, perfectly capturing the character's arrogance and ambition...The play is a bit heavy on the monologues, but then again, these provide character insights that the audience couldn't get any other way...'Rebel in the Soul' is your chance to experience some of the most formidable characters in Irish history up close and personal."
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April 21st, 2017

“Crisply staged by Charlotte's consistently gripping although it too often substitutes expository monologues for dramatic action. However, several scenes, especially a riveting discussion toward the end between Browne and the Archbishop of Dublin, make up for the playwright's overdependence on direct address…Given the room's intimacy, though, it wouldn't hurt for the men to lower the decibel level and stress the realism of their intentions over the grandiosity of their rhetoric.”
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