Wednesday August 12, 2020

Stage: Festive choice a bit of a turkey

The Recruiting Officer. By George Farquhar. Abbey Theatre, Dublin until January 26

15th December, 2007

The Recruiting Officer. By George Farquhar. Abbey Theatre, Dublin until January 26

Irish dramatist George Farquhar’s 300-year-old play is an odd choice for the National Theatre to stage at this time of year. Written as an anti-war piece, this satire on military recruitment follows the exploits of two officers who compete to enlist soldiers in an Irish town.

Recruitment methods in the early 18th century often involved underhand tricks, intimidation and bribery. Farquhar himself...

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