It is with great pleasure that I return to my keyboard, to blog about #Festival45, to wax lyrical about The Silence of Snow: The Life of Patrick Hamilton; Mark Farrelly’s second offering to the festival.
This time, we are invited into the world of Patrick Hamilton, the prolific English writer and playwright, well known for plays such as Rope and Gaslight.
The story begins in a dark, 1950s electro-therapy room before the audience are offered a whistle-stop tour of the key moments in Hamilton’s life. This story is both fascinating and deeply troubling, but Farrelly presents it with swagger and poise as he shows us the full spectrum of Hamilton’s persona, gliding effortlessly between the different episodes of his life and different mental states. All the while, the narrative is neatly punctuated with excerpts from some of his scripts, including the murderous opening to one of his most popular plays Rope, in which two young intellectuals strangle a man to death, put him in a chest, and invite the victims family to dine off the chest carrying the deceased; “I never did write for family audiences,” Hamilton muses.
It’s a life I knew very little about, but one that, thanks to this performance, I immediately found incredibly interesting and if such a documentary of Hamilton’s life hasn’t been considered for television, then I declare that it should be!
The run of The Silence of Snow is now over, but there are plenty more shows left to catch in the festival – and you can purchase tickets here.