Full Mettle jacket


Genevieve O’Reilly is filmed during the rehearsal. All photos: Helen Murray.

Genevieve O’Reilly told David Hennessy about his new drama on climate change and NHS weapons, when the show closed in March last year when Covid hit for the first time and how the theater could not be cured.

“It’s amazing to be back in the theater,” Irish actress Genevieve O’Reilly told The Irish World while rehearsing Al Smith’s Rare Earth Mettle at the Royal Court Theater in London.

Opening this week, it is a global exhibition of new games that focuses on the biggest issue of the day – one that can put Covid-19 in the shadows – climate change, as world leaders talk about the same topic in the COP. -26.

Rare Earth Mettle was inspired by the Lithium Triangle in the Andes and is a multi-genre, multi-person drama, which focuses on Bolivia’s salty mountains but combines many states and territories.

“It’s an amazing drama. He is very ambitious in his mind.

“His mind is very big, and he is as brave and courageous as a playwright to be able to fight all of these ideas within one piece.

“It transcends continents and cultures. They are conflicting cultures, as well as opposing ideas.

“It’s a really brave part.

It has been a pleasure to be with them in this movement.

Rare Earth Mettle star Arthur Davill, best known for his role in Doctor Who and the first London and Broadway songwriting series Once upon a time, like Henry Finn, a billionaire who believes he can save the world by building electric cars.

However Genevieve’s personality as well as the areas that may be affected have other perspectives.

“Apparently it has been placed in a salt mine in Bolivia.

“Henry is like the man of Elon Musk.

“The amazing Arthur Darvill is playing him. And he’s very funny and that’s what you want the billionaire to become.

“I play Anna, and she is a doctor. She loves the NHS so much and closes the holes in the NHS to make it work.

“My behavior is mind-boggling, honestly looking for solutions to holes in the NHS, and they see lithium as a way to reduce the amount of medical exposure carried by the epidemic of madness that is so prevalent in our culture.

“That’s why he’s looking to save 17 million people in this country. He wants to use lithium to power electric vehicles to save the world.

“It simply came to our notice then. Arthur Henry’s character thinks of the future. She’s always waiting. They are always looking to create, create, create solutions, discover new things, find new things that will solve the world.

“Anna is very interested in what we have found so far, especially in relation to the NHS and its protection and care and going with us as we move forward.

“But they are very skeptical of what we have found in the past when they do not have time for this.

“So it is very strange, the personality of these people is what drives them and if there is any commitment.

“And there are Bolivia and its territories.

“Carlo Albán plays Kimsa.

“It is an interesting discussion of colonial leadership and our ideas and how we as a people right now – while Cop26 is taking place – find a way to solve the problem that exists because of the climate crisis that we are supporting ourselves and our systems.

“How do we change behavior? Can we change our behavior? Or are we just looking for new ideas?

“We’re in a bit of a dilemma right now and I think the game is acceptingly bold and struggling.”

While it does cover major topics, Rare Earth Mettle doesn’t want to be the subject and Genevieve is quick to say it’s funny and funny.

“It simply came to our notice then. I feel like saying that.

“He (Al) is very intelligent and very sharp.

He enjoys being with them. He really enjoys laughing and finding humor and definitely puts it in a piece.

“His writings are wise and prudent even though his ideas are very great.

“His writings, together with the advice of Hamish (Pirie), allow for some positive feedback.

“It’s good to play and I think it would be great for the audience to see.”

Genevieve is best known for her work on the radio show which includes Episodes, Three Families, Tin Star, The Secret, The Fall and The Honorable Woman.

She also starred in Princess Diana in the TV series, Diana: Last Days of a Princess.

Arthur Darvill and Genevieve.

He has participated in many London theaters and works at the Gateway to Dubin and with the Sydney Theater Company.

However, the last time he was on stage he also had a production that started in the Royal Court.

Genevieve played Mary Carney in Jez Butterworth’s The Ferryman.

Directed by Sam Mendes and actors including Brid Brenndan, Dearbhla Molloy, Paddy Considine and Laura Donnelly, the show was shown around the world in 2017 before moving to West End and then Broadway won the Evening Standard Theater Awards, two Olivier Awards and 4 Tony Awards.


Had it not been for the plague, he would have returned to the Royal Court soon as he and his players were experimenting with Rare Earth Mettle Covid-19 before destroying plans to launch it last year.

“I was going back. We were repeating this. We started experimenting with this in March 2020.

“We were in the living room, sitting around a table discussing the drama.

“Instead, we had just started rehearsing the piece.

“And I remember Vicky Featherstone (Artistic Director of the Royal Court Theater) coming into our rehearsal room- This was about a week, maybe a week and a half before Boris Johnson closed.

“He came and said, ‘What I really like is the safety of the working people here. So we will stop this, we will close’.

“It was a wonderful day and I am grateful to Vicky Featherstone: Her leadership, her courage, the way they as a company take care of us all at a time when there was no good leadership.

“They stood up and said, ‘Well, let’s drop weapons and protect everyone and everyone go home.

“That’s why it’s amazing to be back here, doing the show 18 or 19 months later, or whatever.”

Genevieve admits that at times in those months, he did not even watch the show return.

“I have not seen him come back.

“Because I don’t know how the theater will come back.

“Of all the media, theater seems to be the most complex because the theater is a common occurrence.

“Theaters are a place where people gather and it is a gathering that makes this section so special, because it is a very old theatrical event, the idea that it exists now that we can share it with them.

“The only thing we could not do was gather together so I was a little nervous. I had no idea how it would come back.

“That is why I am so grateful for the actors, for what they are doing, the security policies they have, and the generosity of the people who are coming.

I can’t imagine what it will be like to stand on the stage and see the people in those seats.

“I see it as a great generosity, and I really look forward to sharing it.”

When the theater reopens, you may expect them to play safely with what they put in but that is not the case with Rare Earth Mettle.

“It’s very demanding and it’s not scary. It’s scary to put this on right now because we’re in the middle of this and it seems like, to us here, that we’re coming in the winter and that we’re going around again, isn’t it? T this?

Genevieve as Princess Diana.

“I think there is a sense that maybe everything there is can be bright, shiny: A lot of music in the West End and a lot of things that make us feel good because we are suffering.

“But I think the one that is most bold in this case right now in its sole discretion is to fight these big ideas.

“And also a stadium that wants to set up and initiate discussions, which I think, the point of the theater: Creating cultural dialogue.”

The past year has been a difficult one for Genevieve, who grew up in Adelaide, Australia, where most of her family lives.

“I did not return to Ireland or Australia, nor did I see any family.

“We have been very careful. I hope, fingers, I’m going back to Ireland for Christmas.

“I do not know, but I know that I will be with my cousins ​​and relatives and my children are going to visit their relatives.

“So it would be amazing if this could happen.

“I have everything that can happen.

“I have the privilege of being with my husband and children.

“I think Christmas is over, we were thankful that no one was dead. That’s why it put everything right last year.

We had so much to be thankful for.

This is how we did it all.

“But I’m sorry to see my family again so I’m looking forward to finding ways to do this, I hope to have a chance soon.

“As for my mother and father, my sisters and my brothers in Australia, it is a different conversation.

“Obviously, like anyone with families around the world, it has been a very difficult time.”

Although it was written long before Covid became an object, it seems to have taken on a whole new meaning because of what happened last year.

“It is incredible how this drama is designed to have been written before the plague.

“It is more important now than ever.

“And it’s wonderful in the scriptures because things can happen so easily.

“This has made it, through the epidemic, even more important.”

That is a major question that has been asked repeatedly in recent weeks, Can we change for the better in the future?

“’Can we change?’ that is the big question. It’s a big question.

“I have hope forever. I am an expectant person and I believe in people.

“The play answers questions about this.

“Obviously, not everyone is as optimistic as I am but I think people are willing to change. I think people really want to change.

“I hope we continue to talk and encourage each other. Talk, talk, and talk because it is in these conversations that we know we are not alone.

“We can try together, I think.”

Rare Earth Mettle written by Al Smith tours the Royal Court Theater’s Jerwood Theater Down Wednesday 10 November- Saturday 18 December.

For more information, Click here.

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