The Verdict is a thrilling courtroom drama that you won’t want to miss this week at the New Theatre, Cardiff.
Based on Barry Reed’s novel, and subsequent 1982 film starring Paul Newman, The Verdict is a courtroom drama set against the backdrop of Boston in the early 80s. Adapted by MARGARET MAY HOBBS, the story follows that of Frank Galvin (JASON MERRELLS); a hard-on-his-luck ambulance chaser working to make ends meet. Frank is presented with an open-and-shut malpractice case and is shaken to his very core.
Against all the odds, Frank steps toe to toe with the powers of the catholic church and a ruthless medical establishment. After he refuses to settle out of court, he takes the case to court, refusing to let justice fail the condemned young mother.
The play was gripping from the moment it started. Jason Merrells delivers a captivating performance with a stage presence that had the whole theatre waiting on his every word. Frank Galvin is a complex character and Merrells plays him with a clear passion for the role. It was a truly impressive performance to watch. His Bostonian accent, just like that of the rest of the cast, was faultless and really perfected the scene setting throughout.
The play offers up a large cast of characters and every one of them stood out as being excellently performed. VINCENT PIRILLO took the part of Moe Katz’s, Galvin’s former partner, a sympathetic character who brought a great sense of humanity to an already very empathic show. OKON JONES portrayed expert witness Lionel Thompson with a warm humour that brought a sense of realism to the character.
Overall, the cast was phenomenal and kept the show interesting and engaging throughout. The set design was impressive and brought the setting to life on the stage, capturing the 80s era and Bostonian aesthetic with hints of Irish décor and New England charm.
Director MICHAEL LUNNEY has created a show that was a pleasure to see at the New Theatre and is an absolute must-see.
THE VERDICT will run until the 28th of January with performances every evening at 7.30 pm, with a 2.30 matinee on Wednesday and Saturday. Thursday’s performance will be captioned.
Tickets are available to purchase here.