Belfast Telegraph

Review: Yeeoo! Maggie Yer Ma brings 'geg-fest' to Grand Opera House

By Jackie Bell

Maggie Muff has made a triumphant return to the Belfast stage.

Leesa Harker's one-of-a-kind character is back with her latest update on what's been going on around the shabeen and, as expected, it's as crazy and hilarious as always.

This time around Maggie - played to perfection by Caroline Curran - is a single mother who is trying to juggle raising her darling 'Prosecco' while also tackling the usual family dramas and keeping up with friend Big Sally-Ann, who has decided to become a Buddhist.

Following on from the success of Dirty Dancin' In Le Shebeen and Maggie's Feg Run, Maggie Yer Ma takes the audience on a hand held tour of the hilarious madness of her life in north Belfast.

I'll admit the first ten minutes had me wondering if I was going to enjoy the next two hours - I hadn't seen Maggie on stage in her previous shows and was going in blind on this particular occaision.

But it's hard for anyone from Belfast not to love this show - it is in fact a "pure geg".

The jokes come thick and fast, and there's no time for sensitive souls to be shocked because the next outrageous comment is already being set up. The content and the language are crude, but my guess would be audiences know what they are in for and the howling laughter from the stalls is indicative that it's all well recieved.

Again, as I had never watched any of the previous Maggie Muff plays I was unaware the whole show was solely performed by Curran - and she is quite simply outstanding.

Switching between characters with absolute ease and without missing a beat, Curran's performance is an acting masterclass.

Her ability to portray moments of poignancy sandwiched between belly-laugh instances of craziness is to be admired, if not awarded.

I may be late to the party, but I am now 100% a fan.

A question that did cross my mind was whether or not this particular show could be enjoyed by someone who isn't from Belfast - there's a lot of in-jokes, vernacular and actions that is pure Belfast so it would be interesting to hear an outsider's view.

That being said this is an unapologetic Belfast show and audiences know what to expect from it - a great night's craic.

When Curran finished up on stage at the Grand Opera House, it felt like the two hours flew by and I could have quite easily sat and listened to her for two more.

The audience jumped to their feet in praise of the actress following her tour-de-force performance and rightly so - Maggie Yer Ma is absolutely hilarious and Caroline Curran is as unique as the character she portrays.

  • Maggie Yer Ma runs at the Grand Opera House, Belfast until June 16. For more information, visit www.goh.co.uk.

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