Review: Michelle & Arlene

Arlene Foster has been busy recently and probably could do with a few days away but would she choose Michelle O’Neill as a travelling companion? According to playwright Rosemary Jenkinson they could well be the ideal couple. Consider the scene.

It’s 22nd December, a time of goodwill to all men says Arlene, except orangemen, everyone hates them says Michelle. But could it be that the two women might work out a resolution to the Assembly stalemate if they lock themselves away for two days in their Stormont office? Better still, who would know if they bunked off through a window and took a plane to Bulgaria for a short ‘getting to know you’ break? What would happen if their bags are stolen and they have to thumb a lift and eventually get home in the back of a horse box? And how do we know that Arlene wears union jack pants and bra? And more to the point, who else knows!

This isn’t a play, it’s a pastiche, a romp with two actresses, Maria Connolly and Mary- Frances Doherty, going at it hot and heavy. As Michelle says, the longer we stay out of the office the more they’ll appreciate us when we go back, we’ll be super stars! And are they? Do they come up with a resolution? Certainly they bond and although not bosom mates before they were after their adventure, opposites appear to attract!

Clever script with references to topical events and people and a novel venue, a pop up theatre in Shaftesbury Square, a black area with chairs and stools, nothing fancy just an hour of silliness and a good laugh.

Anne Hailes

Directed buy Richard Lavery.

Accidental Theatre Company

Michelle & Arlene

Holiday Special Planes, Trains & Tractors by Rosemary Jenkinson

The play runs until Saturday 8 p.m. and again on 21 and 22 December at 12 Shaftesbury Square. More at

Post Author: Belfast Times

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