REVIEW: The Pillowman at The Lyric Theatre, Belfast

Captivating. Hilarious. Disturbing.

Last night, Dan and I headed to the Northern Irish premiere of The Pillowman, Oscar-winning Martin McDonagh’s black comedy thriller. We were excited to return to the place of our butterfly-inducing and nervous laugh-producing second date to be introduced to what some call the Irish playwright’s finest work.


The award-winning and critically-acclaimed play, produced by Decadent Theatre Company, stars David McSavage (The Savage Eye) and Gary Lydon (War Horse, The Guard, Calvary) as two brutal policemen operating in a totalitarian state. When the short story writer Katurian K Katurian (Peter Campion – London Irish, 6Degrees, Lawless) is brought in for questioning he can’t understand what he could have done wrong, but he gradually realises that there may be a terrible connection between his stories and a series of bizarre and horrific murders.


The macabre subject matter is carried by a compassionate brotherly relationship, dark and quick-witted humour and, in last night’s case, an impeccable performance from Peter Campion. Campion’s tone, expression, timing and delivery captured the audience as he brought life to a complex character caught in a deliciously intricate plot of twists and turns. We laughed, gasped and tensed our toes (well, I say we…my stilettos were somewhat restricting) in the space of seconds as McDonagh’s storyline romanced our imaginations before jumping out from dark corners that were impossible to foresee.

The Lyric Theatre’s Executive Producer Jimmy Fay said, “Martin McDonagh’s plays have always been hugely popular in Northern Ireland. We’re excited to host this incredible production and its all-star cast, and I’d urge anyone with an interest in award-winning theatre, gripping thrillers and the art of comic storytelling to see this show.”


The Pillowman will be performed on the Danske Bank stage from March 24 – April 19. Tickets cost from £15 – £24.50, with £10 student tickets available on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and matinees. Book yours here.

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