John B Keane’s classic, The Matchmaker, which was due to be staged at Skibbereen Town Hall on Friday, October 19th, has been postponed until next April. People who have already bought tickets may obtain a refund from Thornhill Bros Electrical, Skibbereen, telephone 028-22557.
The Matchmaker by John B Keane, one of Ireland’s most celebrated writers, will play for one night only at Skibbereen Town Hall on Friday, October 19th, at 8pm.
The production stars television favourite Mary McEvoy, best known for her role as Biddy in the long-running RTÉ series, Glenroe. Irish actor and comedian Jon Kenny, who was part of the Irish comic duo d’Unbelievables with Pat Shortt, joins Mary to complete the cast.
Kenny is best known outside Ireland for appearing in the Channel 4 sitcom Father Ted. Together, they play myriad characters in this hilarious and earthy dramatic comedy.
The play follows the efforts of Dicky Mick Dicky O’Connor to make matches for the lonely and lovelorn. Keane, an avid observer of people and the cultures that bind and create their view of the world, uses The Matchmaker as an exploration of rural loneliness.
Aware that generations of people became masters of their own destinies late in life, and only then began to look for companionship and love, once their duties as minder of aging parents were concluded or they had finally inherited, or were the left-over brother or sister.
Using his inimitable way with words and his sense of ‘divilment’ and wit, Keane delves into the longings, hungers, fears and foibles of this collection of lonely county people and creates a marvelously-colourful world, taking us back to a simpler time, when phones were few and far between and the only web was one left behind by spiders!
The show is directed by Michael Scott. Tickets are available in advance from Thornhill Bros Electrical, Skibbereen, tel 028-22557, and early booking is advised.
Skibbereen Theatre Society will return to the Town Hall with their award-winning play “Abigail’s Party” by Mike Leigh on Monday 2nd and Tuesday 3rd April for their final two performances. Patrons who were disappointed when the play was postponed due to snow at the end of February will have the opportunity to see this acclaimed production of the 1970’s classic comedy.
Tickets held by people who had booked for the cancelled performance of February 28th will be honoured on either night.
Every member of the five-strong cast has won at least one acting award on the recent drama festival circuit. Greg Watkin won best actor at Mountmellick Drama Festival while Mary O’Driscoll won best actress at North Cork Drama Festival. Bernie Whooley won the best supporting actress award at the West Cork Drama Festival and Angela Galvin won the same accolade in the Clare Festival.
Paul Delaney was a multi-award winner, collecting Best Supporting Actor titles in Kerry, West Clare and Tipperary. Fachtna O’Driscoll won the Best Director award at the Clare Drama Festival in Scariff last Saturday, while the hard-working backroom team won the coveted award for Best Presentation (setting, lighting and sound) at the West Cork festival in Rossmore.
Tickets for Easter Monday and Tuesday’s performances may be booked at Thornhill Electrical, Bridge St., Skibbereen, phone 028-22557.
Skibbereen Theatre Society will present their Spring 2018 play, ‘Abigail’s Party’ by Mike Leigh in the Town Hall, Skibbereen, on Wednesday February 21st, Saturday 24th, Sunday 25th and Wednesday 28th.
The play, a comedy, is a new departure for the group, being set in suburban London in the 1970’s. In the play, Beverly has invited her new neighbours over for drinks. She has also asked her divorced neighbour, Sue, because Sue’s fifteen-year-old daughter, Abigail, is holding a party in their house. Beverly’s husband, Laurence, comes home late from work, just before the guests arrive.
The gathering starts off in a stiff insensitive, British middle-class way with people who do not know each other, until Beverly and Laurence start sniping at each other. Tensions mount and awkward situations abound until the play reaches a tragi-comic conclusion.
The cast for this production includes Mary O’Driscoll, Greg Watkin, Bernie Whooley (who is making her debut with the group), Paul Delaney and Angela Galvin.
Mary will be familiar to Skibbereen audiences for many roles, memorably her sensitive portrayal of Deirdre in ‘The Quiet Moment’ (2016) and as Anna in ‘Lovers at Versailles’ (2017). Greg and Paul are comparative newcomers to the Skibbereen stage, both having made their debuts in 2017 in ‘Babysitting Calvin’ as Bob and Calvin, respectively, while Angela Galvin will be remembered for her Aunt Lizzie role in ‘Family Plot’ (2015).
The director is Fachtna O’Driscoll and stage management is by Una Murray. Gearoid MacEoin and John Hegarty are in charge of lighting and Fachtna Hamilton runs the extensive soundtrack. Set construction is in the experienced hands of Barty Connolly, Charlie Keohane and Gearoid MacEoin.
Curtain is at 8pm nightly and tickets are available to book at Thornhill’s Electrical (028-22557). After the four-night run in Skibbereen, the group will set off on the amateur drama festival circuit during the month of March with performances in Castleisland, Mountmellick, Charleville, Rossmore, Doonbeg, Holycross and Scariff.
Skibbereen Theatre Society’s summer production for 2017 consists of two short plays. Both are madcap comedies, full of laugh-a-minute slapstick humour – ideal entertainment for the holiday season.
The first play, “Babysitting Calvin” by John H Newmeier, features three newcomers to the Skibbereen stage, Paul Delaney, Maura Cunningham and Greg Watkin, as well as regulars Isobelle Nealon and Mary O’Driscoll. The play tells of 10-month-old Calvin’s (Paul Delaney) efforts to prevent his babysitter Laura (Maura Cunningham) from indulging in too much hanky-panky on the sofa with her friend Bob (Greg Watkin) while his mother Katie (Isobelle Nealon) and her pal Donna (Mary O’Driscoll) are out on the town. Few will believe that a 10-month-old in a play pen could cause so much havoc!
The second play, “Religious Knowledge” by Eamonn Kelly, takes us back to the classroom of a Christian Brothers’ school around 1970, and the hilarious spectacle of the brother (Fachtna O’Driscoll) trying to teach his disinterested class (Ger Minihane, Kevin Cadogan and newcomer, Joe O’Sullivan) his version of Irish History, Religion, Sex Education, and Singing, again with some crazy, off the wall consequences.
Both plays are directed by Fachtna O’Driscoll and stage management is by Angela Galvin, assisted by Una Murray and Sinead Cripps. Sound is by Fachtna Hamilton, lighting is by Gearoid MacEoin, while Barty Connolly and Charlie Keohane complete the stage crew who have to come up with two stage settings on the one night!
The double bill opens in Skibbereen Town Hall on Sunday 6th August and continues on bank holiday Monday 7th and Tuesday 8th and again on the following weekend: Friday 11th, Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th. Performances are at 8.00 p.m. each night. Bookings at Thornhills Electrical, Bridge St (call in or phone 028-22557) or may be purchased at the town Hall from 7.30 p.m. on show nights.
Schull Drama Group will be staging Last of the Red Hot Lovers in Skibbereen Town Hall on February 24th for one night only. Curtain is at 8 pm. Admission is €10. Concessions are available for seniors and students.
Last of the Red Hot Lovers is one of the most amusing of Neil Simon’s comedies. The play is set in the 60’s, and we have situated it somewhere in the South of England. It focuses on Barney Cashman – middle-aged, married and overworked – as he begins to feel a desire for sexual adventure. Over a nine month period, he invites three women to his mother’s apartment to have an afternoon of extramarital sex. The first, Elaine Navazio, proves to be a bundle of neuroses; Bobbi Michele is next, a kooky 20-ish actress; finally Jeanette Fisher, a gloomy, depressed housewife who is married to Barney’s best friend. Will Barney’s attempts at seduction be successful?
Founded in 1980, Schull Drama Group is now a vibrant and dynamic company of 60 plus members. Over the years they have tackled a wide range of projects: plays, musicals, pantomimes, street theatre and workshops. They continue to strive for excellence, and to push themselves with entertaining and exciting projects. They have been competing on the drama festival circuit for many years and will be touring this play to seven festivals in March.
We look forward to welcoming you in Skibbereen for what promises to be a very entertaining evening. Contact number 086 8785304. Follow us on Facebook facebook.com/schulldrama/
Skibbereen Theatre Society’s Spring production, Lovers at Versailles by Bernard Farrell, opens at the Town Hall, Skibbereen, on Friday, February 10th. This year, the group has decided to take a year out from the drama festival circuit and concentrate on a ‘home’ production. Consequently, there will be just the one run of this laugh-a-minute comedy – so no second chance to see it after the drama festivals are over! Lovers at Versailles will run for six nights over two consecutive weekends Friday 10th, Saturday 11th and Sunday, February 12th, as well as Friday 17th, Saturday 18th and Sunday, February 19th.
The play examines the plight of three women who are left behind when Stephen Sullivan dies. His wife, Clara, always suspected that Stephen had a hidden life. His daughter, Isobel, is determined to use every opportunity to move up the social ladder, and Anna, Stephen’s favourite daughter, is offered a second chance at happiness.
Throw into the mix Farrell’s off-the-wall sense of humour, along with some unexpected twists and turns, and audiences should enjoy a great night’s fun.
The cast has some regulars with quite a few new faces to the Skibbereen stage. Directed by Fachtna O’Driscoll, the lead roles are played by Sarah McCarthy, Mary O’Driscoll, Jason Moloney, Kieran Daly, Carmel O’Driscoll, Kevin Cadogan, Terri Kearney and Niamh Woods. There are quite a few ‘extras’ with some familiar and some not-so-familiar Skibbereen faces appearing throughout!
The stage crew of Charlie Keohane, Gearoid MacEoin, Con Minihane and Fachtna Hamilton, under the watchful eye of technical director Barty Connolly, has come up with a few surprises for the audience. John Hegarty and Gearoid MacEoin have devised an imaginative lighting plot.
Sound recording was by Sacha Puttnam and the sound system will be operated by Hilda Hegarty. Stage management is done by Sinead Cripps and Una Murray.
As usual, bookings are through Thornhills Electrical and sales are sure to be brisk for a play that is novel in structure and hilariously funny.
* An upcoming production visiting Skibbereen Town Hall is The Successful TD, based on the writings of John B Keane and starring Mary McEvoy of Glenroe fame and Jon Kenny of D’Unbelievables, which will be playing there on Friday, March 10th next, for one night only. It is currently on stage at the Gaeity Theatre in Dublin to great reviews and advance booking is recommended for the forthcoming Skibbereen show.
Two of Ireland’s best-loved actors star in The Successful TD, which
will be staged in Skibbereen Town Hall on Friday, March 10th next, as
part of a nationwide tour.
Mary McEvoy and Jon Kenny get together for another comedic romp, based
on two John B Keane books, the Letters of A Successful TD and Letters
of An Irish Minister of State, this piece – adapted for stage by
McEvoy, Kenny and director Michael Scott – follows the trials,
tribulations, misadventures and hilarious antics of TD Tull McAdoo as
he seeks re-election to the Dáil in the ‘October elections.’
Written by John B back in 1967, it displays his edge for humour and
satire that are still uncomfortably close to the politics of today. It
contains Keane’s usual quota of madcap characters.
Tull has roped in the help of his faithful daughter Kate, while his
wife nurses her various ailments in bed or Lisdoonvarna, but his arch
enemy, Flannery, the local school teacher, plans to scupper the
election for him.
Uncannily tying in with latterday phenomena such as ‘fake news’ and
alternative facts,’ McAdoo’s sums up his philosophy, as follows: ‘Any
man with a vote is a man to be respected. I’ll play with them, lie to
them, sing dumb about them while I have a chance of a vote. That’s my
livelihood. Don’t give me no more stink about the truth. Christ told
the truth and they crucified Him…’
Tickets for The Successful TD in Skibbereen on March 10th are on sale
at Thornhill Brothers Electrical, telephone 028-22557 or 22316, and
advance booking is strongly recommended.
Skibbereen Theatre Society has a very busy weekend ahead with three performances of their one-act play, ‘No Romance Act 2.’ They perform this Friday (11th) in the CAT Club, Carroll’s Quay, Cork, in the Cork One-Act Drama Festival (tickets 021-4505624). On Saturday 12th, they move to the West Clare Festival in Doonbeg (tickets at the door) and, this Sunday night, they’re back to County Cork for their performance in the Haulbowline One-Act Drama Festival, which this year is being held in the Community Hall, Ringaskiddy (tickets 086-3388942).
‘No Romance’ is already an award winner – Skibbereen won the Naas One-Act Drama Festival a fortnight ago, with Fachtna O’Driscoll winning the award for best performer.
They are competing in a total of five festivals (their final festival will be in Rossmore on Saturday 19th – tickets 086-4481086) and three wins are needed to secure a place in the All-Ireland finals, which are on in Dundrum, Dublin, on the first weekend of December. A tall order but fingers crossed.
If you know any Skibbereen exiles in any of these places, spread the word.
Skibbereen Theatre Society is presenting two very funny one-act plays in the Town Hall this Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights, October 21st, 22nd and 23rd, Lovers – Losers by Brian Friel and No Romance Act 2 by Nancy Harris.
Lovers is directed by Declan McCarthy and the cast comprises Ger Minihane, Angela Galvin, Catherine Field and Siuin Hurley. The Skibbereen group first presented this hilarious romp back in 2000 and reached the All-Ireland Confined Drama Finals with it.
No Romance Act 2 is directed by Catherine Field and stars Carmel and Fachtna O’Driscoll as they reprise their roles as a married couple who cut loose on one another on the occasion of his mother’s funeral. It contains strong language and some adult themes and so is not suitable for children.
The stage crew includes Barty Connolly, Gearóid MacEoin, Charlie Keohane and Fachtna Hamilton. Tickets are available in advance from Thornhill Bros Electrical, Skibbereen, tel 028-22316, or at the Town Hall door from 7.30pm on the three show nights.