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Friday, February 22, 2019


(Aaron McIlroy)

All in all, ADHD is a gem of a theatre performance, with McIlroy at his absolute best, and deserves to be seen by all Durbanites. (Review by Barry Meehan)

The strains of the Pink Floyd classic Brick In The Wall introduce the latest Aaron McIlroy one-man show ADHD at Durban’s Sneddon Theatre, with the salient line Hey, Teacher, Leave them Kids Alone setting the scene for McIlroy’s first day at school character, who hates boxes (the set is constructed from them) and suffers from a severe case of ADHD. His father has told him that there are always tears on such a day, but in this scenario it’s his teacher, Miss Cook, who is reduced to tears.

The show is scripted by McIlroy and Patrick Kenny, and directed by Kenny, as was the case with their last smash hit Comedy Masterclass. ADHD is as good as Comedy Masterclass, if not better, so hats off to these two collaborators. McIlroy as always been the master of the throwaway line and aside, and ADHD has these in spades.

The show rollicks along at a frenetic pace, with character after character appearing with a minimum of costume changes. Among those to look out for are the school’s Coach Quinn (“Win with Quinn”) who is also the guidance councillor, trying to convince parents (the audience) that their children are ADHD sufferers and should be medicated, a German motivational speaker, who sings ADHD to the tune of The Village People’s YMCA, introduces us to historical geniuses who were thought to suffer from the condition, and a Zulu warrior (Shaka) who fights the British and the Boers, then accidentally creates the concept of lobola, wondering if it will ever catch on!

Another great moment, among many, was the song The Bird Was Just Flying By, done to the tune of the Rolf Harris classic King Caractacus, which gives us a wonderful insight into the mind of an ADHD sufferer. The show ends all too soon with the pupil’s last year at school, just before Matric trials, and a great song, exhorting the jack-in-the-box to jump out of the box, telling all ADHD sufferers that they are gifted, and can change the world.

All in all, ADHD is a gem of a theatre performance, with McIlroy at his absolute best, and deserves to be seen by all Durbanites. There isn’t anywhere near enough live theatre in this city of ours, so when a show as good as this comes along, it needs to be supported. Please make a point of seeing it and spread the word!

With script by Aaron McIlroy and Patrick Kenny, and directed by Patrick Kenny, ADHD runs at the Elizabeth Sneddon Theatre on UKZN’s Durban campus until March 10, 2019 with shows from Tuesdays to Saturdays at 19h30 and on Sundays at 15h00. Tickets R150 booked through Computicket on 0861 915 8000 or online at – Barry Meehan