Seven Drunken Nights: The Story of The Dubliners Five Stars *****
The Dubliners first began playing at the back of O’Donoghue’s Pub in Dublin, 1962, so what better staging could be used than this very backdrop for the performance to take place. With a few tables and chairs and a little bar further back, the story is told as if we are sat having a drink with the performers, as they tell the stories of the band and burst into song for all to join in, and from the get go the audience was singing at the top of their lungs.
Each musician was absolutely superb, Conor Elliott was so impressive on the fiddle that you couldn’t help but smile every time he played. Paddy Ryan on the banjo opened up a new world of plucking, and at one point even played it over the back of his head. By watching these performers, you feel a real sense of love for The Dubliners catalogue of music and this radiated around the entire theatre.
A special moment was Ged Graham’s rendition of ‘The Town I Loved So Well’, his voice was pure and powerful, it was a pleasure to witness him sing and joke around with the rest of the cast. And speaking of joking around, Billy Barton (Tommy Barton’s (The Gentleman Busker) son) stole the show as the quick- witted mandolin player, singing and telling stories of what Ireland was like when he was young, as he was the oldest member of the cast. These players have a connection to The Dubliners be it by blood or having met them, making the whole affair feel so authentic, a real tribute to who they were and the music they made.
This was a truly nostalgic evening, with old footage of Dublin being projected as the songs were sung, and if you are a fan of The Dubliners, this event is not to be missed. You won’t be able to stop yourself from tapping your toes, clapping along and getting caught up in the cheerful atmosphere. This is the show to see if you want to leave feeling jolly and uplifted.
Review by Saskia Coomber
Tickets and Tour Dates http://www.sevendrunkennights.com