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Review of Dixon and Daughters at the National Theatre - A rare blend of tragedy and comedy

Updated: Jan 29

Rated 🍯🍯🍯🍯

Bríd Brennan as Mary in Dixon and Daughters. An elderly woman stands by her bed holding a phone to her ear,
Bríd Brennan as Mary in Dixon and Daughters. Photo credit: Helen Murray

Dixon and Daughters, the latest production at the National Theatre, is a captivating and emotionally charged play that masterfully blends tragedy and comedy. The slow unraveling of the plot keeps the audience hooked to their seats. This impressive piece of writing unearths the layers and depths of each character in small bits and pieces, making for plenty of curious moments but also satisfyingly tying up all loose ends one by one at the perfect pace.


Dixon and Daughters is an absolutely captivating and engrossing story


The play tells the story of the Dixon family, focusing on the complex relationships between the daughters and their father. The narrative explores themes of love, loss, and the power of family bonds. The playwright skillfully weaves these themes together, creating a story that is both heart-wrenching and heartwarming.


One of the most notable aspects of Dixon and Daughters is its ability to blend tragedy and comedy seamlessly. The audience is taken on an emotional rollercoaster, experiencing moments of intense sadness followed by unexpected bursts of laughter. This balance between the two emotions is a testament to the playwright's talent, as it is not easy to achieve such a delicate equilibrium.

The cast of Dixon and Daughters delivers powerful and engaging performances, bringing the characters to life and evoking a wide range of emotions from the audience. The chemistry between the actors is palpable, making the relationships between the characters feel genuine and believable.


The play's use of comic relief and humour is particularly effective, as it provides a much-needed respite from the heavier moments of the story. The playwright's ability to inject humour into the most unexpected situations is a testament to their skill and creativity, making the audience laugh even during the most somber moments.


Dixon and Daughters is a must-see production at the National Theatre, offering a captivating story that expertly balances tragedy and comedy. The talented cast and the playwright's masterful writing make this play an unforgettable experience that will leave the audience both moved and entertained.


Four stars.


Watched June 2023 at the National Theatre, London

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