Blood Brothers review

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Blood Brothers Review

I went to see Blood Brothers, by Willy Russell on October 15th 2009 at the Manchester Opera House. The story is set in Liverpool in the 1960s and it centres on Mrs Johnston and her family. It tells a demoralizing tale of two twin brothers separated at birth that grew up in two different social classes and how their lives become unavoidably linked ending in them finally becoming reunited in death. It tells the agonising story of a mother’s utter anguish of losing her child and shows us the impoverished life she led and her financial desperation which resulted in her striking a deal with an affluent, infertile women trading in a human life. The show is based around the superstition that “If either twin learns that he was once one of a pair, they shall both immediately die”. The pressures of superstition, economics and class trap both brothers and seal their fate - their paths are destined to cross again in both friendship and anger with the most tragic consequences imaginable. Blood Brothers is a powerful and moving story, with both lively and sad parts. It’s a wonderful tale that will capture your heart and leave a lasting impression. The show is both hilariously funny and deeply moving.

I think that one of the most effective scenes was when Mickey came back home from prison and is going through the depression phase. In this scene the lighting is really dim, which reflects on Mikey’s thought processes which are slow and aged. You can see from this scene that prison has aged Mickey beyond doubt. Sean Jones playing Mickey used movement and his voice to really portray Mickey’s vulnerability. Mickey’s movements were slow and it seemed like every step he took was agony. His speech was slow, and his voice was extremely quiet. He walked hunched over, as if trying to protect himself from an unknown fear and his face was mostly expressionless, showing that he had no feelings left, as if he was just a body without a spirit or soul inside. It was almost like something had suddenly died inside this young man. Mickey stayed away from the front of the stage as if the audience were somehow a threat to him.         Jones had really grasped Mickey’s depression as he struggled to come to terms with being unemployed and an ex- convict. It was an exceptional performance from a very capable, excellent young actor. I think that the reason the director had Jones portray Mickey like this after he was released from prison was that he had given up hope of living and that he was only alive because of the depression pills he was taking, it made the audience realise that Mickey had lost everything, but he thought he could maybe gain something from those pills. I think that the director had Mickey illustrated as this old ancient man even though he was only in his twenties because on the night he had watched Sammy kill that man, it seemed like the man Sammy had killed had been the person inside Mickey, like Mickey himself had died that day. In this scene I thought that Mickey’s interaction with Linda was rather brusque, rough and really distanced, like prison had detached their relationship and caused separation between them both. I thought this was an effective scene because from the way the actor portrayed Mickey you could feel pity for this young man and you almost felt like that man up there was somehow related to you and you had to help him, it really caused me to connect with what was happening on stage. I think it was all of the above techniques used by the actor that really made this scene stand out to me.

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I thought that the most effective actor in this play was Mickey. Sean Jones gave an utterly remarkable performance while playing Mickey as a child, teenager and adult. Jones convincingly played Mickey at the age of seven. He captured every aspect of childhood, from Mickey’s boundless energy to his apathetic attitude and absolute innocence of the world around him. While performing, Jones used both his voice and gesture to emphasis his characters’ feelings and actions. Mickey would always run happily and confidently to the front of the stage, facing the audience without any fear. As a little Boy Mickey energetically ...

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