Adrian Dunbar plays Brendan Behan in this warm and funny drama of an Irish national treasure. This Lyric Theatre Belfast production opened the Naughton Studio in 2011 to great acclaim and is being revived for an international tour, starting at the Acorn Theatre in New York for a limited run.
It is 1960s New York in legendary bohemian bolt hole, The Chelsea Hotel. Arthur Miller is just across the hall and the symphony of 24th Street is rising up and in through the open window of Brendan Behan's room. He is broke, hung over and way past the delivery date of his latest book, the first line of which he is yet to write. He was told to stop drinking or he'd be dead in six months – that was two years ago.
Today is not going well. His mistress keeps ringing, the bills aren't paid and a wire arrives from Dublin with the kind of news that's guaranteed to put his blood pressure through the roof…
“Adrian Dunbar’s performance of Behan is extraordinary. From the very opening scene when he awakens bleary-eyed from the previous night’s bender and struggles to raise himself from his bed to his writing desk where he tips with trembling hands a jug of water over his face, Dunbar’s metamorphosis into Behan is uncanny.”Belfast Telegraph
“Adrian Dunbar is outstanding as the bitter, battered man, who’s burned his boats and is now at the mercy of the high seas.”British Theatre Guide
“In Adrian Dunbar’s riveting central performance, Behan plays the stage Irishman to perfection, a song permanently on his lips, his slurring, alcohol-soaked wit delighting a succession of hangers-on with its scathing, self-deprecating observations.”The Stage
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