been | A Streetcar named Desire

Raw, gripping and confronting are strong adjectives that spring to mind upon reflection of the opening night of  “A streetcar named Desire”  –  a classic Tennessee Williams play set in post war New Orleans and produced by Silo Theatre’s Shane Bosher.

A classic tale of a fractured family dynamic, socio-economic struggles and raw sexuality whose themes are still so prevalent even 70 years after it’s first performance on Broadway.

It’s main protagonist’s; Blanche Dubois (Mia Blake), Stella (Morgana Riley) and her brooding beau Stanley (Ryan O’Kane) bring this Pulitzer Prize winning play to our local stages with such powerful and emotive performances, that really capture the true essence and messages that are pivotal to the play’s success in garnering the audience’s attention and encouraging a reflection upon our own relationships with our family and personal development.

Silo’s ‘A Streetcar named Desire’ is also very effective in the way it incorporates modern elements in it’s 1947 based play – with the use of contemporary communication devices; cordless phone, MacBook and costume choices and even a little snippet of the musical pleasure of Sade’.

I was also taken with it’s use of the stage setting intermingled with changes in scenes.  With activity from every angle giving the audience the sense of urgency, secrecy and communication between characters.   The lighting too, stage kept true to the original production with it’s moody and dusty illumination.

The character of Blanche DuBois – a sultry yet conceited and seemingly self-involved human was incredibly portrayed by Mia Blake, who really brought her to life and throughout the play, in turn, endearing the flawed Blanche to me, with such brazen protectiveness and love of her sister alongside her own tortured and wounded soul.

Morgana Riley’s passion was also so well received as the sweet, caring and utterly loyal Stella – it was a delight to see the genuine dedication and energy into her performance. even to the end which was clearly indicative through the emotion in her eyes.  As was Ryan O’Kane in the aggressive, brutish and sexually charged performance he brought to the Rangatira stage as Stanley Kowalksi.

The play too, would not have been without it’s incredible supporting cast, (Toni Potter, Nicole Whippy, Mark Ruka, Fasitua Amosa, Arlo Green Toni Potter). Vitally important to the engaging scenes set in the hot Southern summer of the US and inclusion of topics broaching upon issues still relevant to this day,  the idea of human evolution, domestic violence and even homosexuality – topics today that are mostly accepted, but at the time of it’s first introduction would have been widely controversial, and are now to Tennessee William’s credit and legacy; having brought such important human issues to life and which we are now free to openly discuss, however confronting and unsettling they may be to one’s senses …  “Sorrow makes for sincerity … ”

A ‘Streetcar named Desire’ was an incredible gift to the 2017 Season of Silo Theatre –  so dynamic and moving that brought true grit and emotion to the stage, and not without a tear to myself, my companion’s and I am sure, many other peoples eyes within the audience that evening.

(Photo credit: Andi Crown Photography & Silo Theatre)

Stanley Kowalksi

Stanley Kowalksi


Blanche Dubois

Blanche Dubois








One of the most celebrated plays of the twentieth century.” (The New York Times)

A Streetcar Named Desire is now showing at the Q-Theatre:

Thursday Aug 24 2017 – Saturday September 16