“Molly Sweeney” By Brian Friel

molly“Molly Sweeney”
By Brian Friel
Narrated by: Jenny Bacon, Robert Breuler, Rick Snyder
Length: 3 hrs and 46 mins
Release date: 02-16-10
Publisher: L.A. Theatre Works

This is the second story of a blind person regaining sight I’ve listened to in the past month.  Not sure why, but my reading list has led me down the path of disabilities.  The last one I read, “Love and First Sight,” was a YA novel following a young boy who regains his sight in modern times.  This time around it is a play that takes place in a remote Irish village, I’m not too sure of the time period, but it seems that it is during a time where restoring sight is just short of miraculous.

The play is performed through a series of monologues from the three main characters, Molly, her husband, Frank, and Dr. Rice.    From what I gathered the two men have no real interest in how Molly feels about all this and judging from the tragic end, I would say Molly is not too happy about the promise of a sighted life.

Dr. Rice seems to be only interested in gaining back his standing in the medical world.  Alcoholism has taken most of that away from him, but now he may be able to redeem himself.  So his interest is very selfish.

Molly’s husband, Frank is pushing her to the surgery with no concern for her feelings or risks.  While Molly has led a happy life for 40 years, all while sightless.

The two men never really care about how Molly would be able to handle the sudden influx of visual information.

The complete lack of interaction between the characters helps to solidify the lack of concern from all but Molly.  There’s a moment when Molly get’s angry and delivers a scathing monologue, but with no one listening it is a perfect example of how her feelings are never considered.

The performances in the L.A. Theatre Works production are once again perfect and the production puts you once again in the middle of the show.

Publisher’s Summary
Molly Sweeney, by the great Irish playwright Brian Friel, tells the story of married couple Molly and Frank, who live in a remote Irish village. Molly has been blind since birth, but now a surgeon – Mr. Rice – believes he may be able to restore her sight. In a series of interwoven monologues, Molly Sweeney takes us into the minds of three people with very different expectations of what will happen when Molly regains her vision.

©2009 L.A. Theatre Works (P)2009 L.A. Theatre Works