Major Barbara

Even though we have seen this play several times, it still manages to keep my attention. Shaw’s arguments are always entertaining, even when he goes overboard. In this production, Nicole Underhay is superb as Major Barbara, passionately fighting to save the souls of the poor and downtrodden. It is easy to understand why Adolphus Cusins (Graeme Somerville) is willing to join the Salvation army to be near her. And you can understand why her overbearing father, played perfectly by Benedict Campbell, wants them both to join him in his armaments business.

Shaw rages against poverty and in favour of good working conditions, but puts all the arguments in the mouth of Undershaft, the munitions manufacturer and war profiteer. His disdain for organized religion leaves Major Barbara with the weaker arguments, to her great frustration.

A superb cast makes this production a delight to watch. Wade Bogert O’Brien is hilarious as the clueless Charles Lomax. Laurie Paton is a terrific Lady Britomart Undershaft.


About cathyriggall

Theatre junkie, who thinks live theatre is the ultimate form of living on the edge. You never know what will happen when an actor steps on the stage.
This entry was posted in Benedict Campbell, Graeme Somerville, Nicole Underhay, Shaw 2013. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Major Barbara

  1. keithhpotter says:

    Yes, Shaw is preachy and he cheats in his arguments to suck you in, but he does it so well and in the hands of a superb cast like this it is always a delight.

    I didn’t really notice the direction, which is a tribute to how Jackie Maxwell just makes it seem to flow so naturally.

    Good fun.

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