Metro Gilded Balloon, Teviot, Edinburgh Festival
In a Month of Fallen Sundays is spellbinding. The lightness of touch is admirable given the subject matter. As a physical ensemble piece it movingly evokes tormented, confined lives and also manages to be funny.
The Magdalen Asylums were Irish convents catering for ‘fallen women’, who were incarcerated and institutionalised for their supposed sins. But this isn’t a production concerned with the specifics of why these young women were interred, or railing against the social forces that put them there.
It is about what happens when human beings are denied their freedom; when they are forcibly removed from the world of choices. The mind becomes their terrain, their only means of trying to impose some order on the insanity of circumstance. Though sharing the same ‘room, of four walls, a bed, a wardrobe’, they were caught up in their own imaginations, playing out their pasts, imagining their futures while their former lives are suspended.
They aren’t mad, or at least they weren’t to begin with.