Review: Observe the Sons of Ulster Marching Towards the Somme

First published in The Times, Friday May 27 2016

Two Stars

 

As we approach the centenary of the Battle of the Somme, it is hard not to become overwhelmed – numbed even – by the scale of the carnage wrought on the bloodiest day in British military history. Frank McGuinness’s 1985 play stands out among dramatic depictions of the First World War for its reluctance to stick to a tried-and-tested formula. Its final sequence takes place in a trench on the morning of the first day of the battle, before a single shot has been fired.

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