4 Whitefriars, Aungier Street
My Fair Mot offers up a language lesson as a theatrical experience. A collaboration between a local community group and Eleonore Nicolas, it invites the audience to a classroom setting for a “dialogue in real time” and an education in “Dublinese.” Taught by two Dublin schoolboys, and a trio of teens in drag, we are advised at the start that there is no script and there have been no rehearsals. Prompted only by oversized flashcards on the walls, the young’fella-teachers guide us through the idiosyncrasies of their idiom. The difference, however, is less lexical than phonetic: bird/burd, orange/oringe, strawberries/strawbreeze.
The difficulty with My Fair Mot, lies not with the aim of the piece but with its execution. The boys are brilliant – only massive – with a natural flair for improvisation, and they seemed to gain enormous confidence from taking command of a group of adults. However, on the other side of the blackboard there is a real sense of discomfort. By not providing any dramaturgical structure to the performers, they are objectified like animals at the circus. Even the best of intentions sometimes misfire.