The Road to Wigan Pier


In the mid 20th century, George Orwell visited the English mining town of Wigan. He witnessed and wrote about the difficult lives of the coal miners. In The Road to Wigan Pier, local writer and critic Robi Polgar brings Orwell's experience to the stage.

There are two ways you could make this into a play. One would be a terribly depressing melodrama. The other is a comedy, song, and dance revue. Polgar does the latter. It's a curiously odd piece, sometimes moving, and often funny.

The highlight of the play was a trip down a coal mine, narrated by George Orwell. My friend Buffy Manners did a great job on costumes, which played a big role as the actors slipped in and out of various characters (and...ahem...outhouses). The songs were pleasant enough, with a 12-string acoustic and Rickenbacker electric giving them a jangly Beatlesque feel. The play, unfortunately, leaves with a one-too-many-endings feeling, as Polgar struggles to give the tragedy an upbeat finish.

Unless you are a Thatcherite, I would recommend seeing it. Only problem is it's closing weekend. Tonight is your last chance. If you do go, I recommend you get there early. Last night was a full house. More info here.


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re: The Road to Wigan Pier

haven't thought or heard about you in a while. hope life in the funny lane is treating you well. wanna go to indian head?

coming to chicago?

david crawford