Beauty Queen of Leenane

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Much of the audience probably walks into “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” at BAM knowing that they’re about to witness the dark workings of a dysfunctional Irish mother-daughter relationship. But the toxicity is so severe that it takes self-discipline to stay for the second act. However, disturbing as it is, it is worthwhile to stay and see playwright Martin McDonagh’s magic at work as he ties together our assumptions, his dropped hints and beautiful performances. We left questioning everything from the characters’ incentives to our own complicity in jumping to stereotypes and conclusions — and, glad that we went for a matinee, as it doesn’t make for a nice bedtime story.

Ilona Quasha

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