Theatre review: Hame, Glasgow

Reviewed by Joyce McMillan. Picture: Neil Hanna
Reviewed by Joyce McMillan. Picture: Neil Hanna
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PACKED audiences are turning out for Phil Mac Giolla Bhain’s full-length St Patrick’s Festival family drama about a Glasgow Irish family living through Scotland’s referendum year.

Hame

The Shed, Shawlands, Glasgow

****

Presented by Sweet For Addicts, a community company working with families impacted by drug problems, the play is rough, raw and sometimes sentimental, as old grandad Jimmy O’Donnell suffers a massive stroke, his quiet son Michael tries to help, and his high-flying granddaughter Annmarie returns from her lucrative job in London to visit and becomes drawn in to the referendum Yes campaign.

For all its cheesy soap-opera moments and long blackouts between short scenes, though, Hame tackles some of the realities of Scottish life over the past year with an energy that often seems to elude better-funded companies. There are rows about the referendum, crises over Jimmy’s homecare, a touching recovery powered by the soft Irish singing of one of his carers, and a cast of 12 all working hard to deliver a thoughtful story of Glasgow life now.

At the heart of the play, there are two gorgeous performances from Eve Menzies and Gill McGowan as Annmarie and her friend Kirsty; two young Glasgow women from different traditions glimpsing the chance of a new Scotland, while the older generation stand by counselling caution, or mourning lost glories.

Seen on 10.03.15

• Final performance tonight