A Streetcar Named Desire

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By Jeremy Miles

The aptly named Dramatic Productions delivers an intriguing and clever interpretation of Tennessee Williams’  classic tale of misery and madness in the deep south.

When  A Streetcar Named Desire was first staged as a Broadway play nearly 65 years ago it launched the careers of two young stars in the making Jessica Tandy and Marlon Brando.

At Poole we have Nicole Faraday (best known for her portrayal of murderer Snowball Merriman in TV’s bad Girls) as ruined Southern belle Blanche DuBois and Leigh Haywood as her abusive brother-in-law Stanley Kowalski.

In psychological free-fall after the suicide of her homosexual husband and the scandal of an affair with a 17-year-old pupil, disgraced English teacher Blanche seeks refuge at her sisters home in New Orleans.

But her airs and graces do little to disguise her growing alcoholism and infuriate Stanley. We watch as this pair - representing the dying elegance of the old south and the harsh new face of the modern working class - lock in desperate combat.

Dominant Stanley finally asserts his power in the most brutal way, raping Blanche while his wife is in hospital having a baby.  Already damaged and fragile, Blanche is destroyed and Stanley has her committed to a mental institution.  

A fine cast directed by Sasha Paul turn in excellent performances in this always  disturbing drama.

 The play, which runs in the Lighthouse Studio until Saturday October 15, is being staged in support of St Anne’s Hospital in Poole and its work in the mental health care field.   

© Jeremy Miles 2017