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Stars in the Morning Sky,

Belgrade Theatre

Belgrade Theatre

ALEX Galin’s play is a brutally honest portrayal of the Soviet Union’s shameful treatment of its undesirables during the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

In Chris Hannan’s timely adaptation, the group of prostitutes are banished to a former mental hospital to ensure visiting foreigners don’t see the country’s dark underbelly.

All the girls are seeking an escape from their sad lives, whether through drink for Anna (Jessica Regan), fantasy for Laura (Ailish Symons) who dreams of becoming an actress, or love for a soldier as naive Maria (Irene Kelleher) does.

Maria and Nikolai’s relationship seems doomed from the start as his mother, the iron-willed Valentina (Elizabeth Moynihan) will not permit her son to love a prostitute, while Laura seeks solace in a mental patient.

The girls begin to open up about the reality of their harsh lives but tragedy strikes just as the Olympic torch finally passes, watched by the banished girls on their barracks roof.

Stars in the Morning Sky is a harsh yet tender portrayal of society’s shame at its undesirables told with wry and unexpected humour, and with London 2012 only months away, serves as a reminder that every citizen is worthy of compassion. Until April 7.

Hannah Jennings Parry

 

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