This June, Blue Raincoat returns to Edinburgh’s Traverse with Eugene Ionesco’s superb tragic farce The Chairs. It’s an ‘interrogation of life and living’ which is told through the story of an old man with important news about the meaning of life, his supportive wife who flurries around setting up for his sermon-like announcement, and the Orator to help him deliver his message.
Blue Raincoat is a celebrated Irish theatre company hailing from Sligo. Producing around four to six productions a year, they focus on new writing as well as modern European classics. Founded in 1991, the company has already won the award for best performance at the International FestCo festival in Bucharest for its productions of Ionesco’s The Bald Soprano and The Chairs. Infusing inspirations from Laurel and Hardy to the Marx Brothers, director Niall Henry has taken a fresh approach to Ionesco’s absurdist masterpiece. Having already received great critical acclaim from its 2006 productions, the company arrives at the Traverse with a bustling sense of expectation (as with every visit), since it’s carved out a name for itself as an intelligent group of thoughtful dramaturges.