The All Ireland Drama Festival 2020 has officially been cancelled by the Amateur Drama Council of Ireland. Here’s the text of the official statement:
“The ADCI are announcing the cancellation of the 2020 Amateur Drama Festival Circuit from 18:00 today Thursday 12th march. This decision is taken based on safety and on guidelines from the Government and the Health Service recently issued. We are sorry that the Covid-19 Virus has brought us to this situation but in the National interest and to play our part we are taking this action. Please take care of yourself during this unprecedented event. Any queries to firstname.lastname@example.org”
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As a result of the government decree on public gatherings in response to the Covid19 crisis, our upcoming ‘Evening of Comedy and Drama’, due to take place on March 18th, 19th and 21st, has now been cancelled. We hope to be able to reschedule in the future. In the meantime, stay well!
The 9-Night Season Tickets for the All Ireland Confined Finals are now sold out. A limited number of 8-Night Season Tickets (excluding opening night) are still available at the cost of €80. To secure your season tickets, please phone the Abbey Arts Centre box office on 071 9851375 (opening hours Mon-Fri, 11am – 3pm).
To keep the local drama fans entertained as we await the Confined Finals in April, Ballyshannon Drama Society will present two one-act plays on March 18th, 19th and 21st in the Abbey Arts Centre, Ballyshannon, at 8.30pm nightly. This promises to be a wonderful night of entertainment for all, with two very different productions.
To begin, we have the one-act comedy ‘A Bit of Land’ by Agnes Adam, directed by Rachel O’Connor. Most recently seen on stage asking questions about handbags, Rachel since directed the hit production of ‘West Side Story’ in the AVS. Rachel also directed the hilarious ‘Play On’ in the Abbey Centre, and so we look forward to plenty of laughs with this show! The cast includes Callum Gallagher, John Travers, Sean McLoone, Andrea Whelan, Margaret Timoney and Frankie O’Donnell.
To balance the comedy, we have ‘Faint Voices’ by John Mc Kenna, directed by Ann Mc Hugh. Ann’s last one-act production, ‘Five Kinds of Silence’ won many awards on the festival circuit, and took home Second Place in the All Ireland Finals in Letterkenny in 2017. Of course, several of Ann’s full-length productions made it to the All Ireland Finals as well, such as ‘God of Carnage’ and ‘The Gingerbread Lady’, with ‘Steel Magnolias’ coming first in the Confined Finals. The cast includes Audrey Davitt, Terence McEneaney, Sean Donegan and Rachel O’Connor.
“Faint Voices” by John McKenna (Drama)
Directed by Anne McHugh Cast: Audrey Davitt, Terence McEneaney, Sean Donegan and Rachel O’Connor
‘Faint Voices’ portrays the doomed relationship between the WW1 soldier-poet Francis Ledwidge and his lover Ellie Vaughey, and the impact of his death on family and friends. Ledwidge, known as the ‘Poet of the Blackbird’, was born near Slane, and served in the British Army. He was killed in the Battle of Ypres in 1917.
“A Bit of Land” by Agnes Adam (Comedy)
Directed by Rachel O’Connor Cast: Callum Gallagher, John Travers, Sean McLoone, Andrea Whelan, Margaret Timoney and Frankie O’Donnell.
A rollicking comedy! Tommy Boyle persuades Dan Murphy to impersonate his recently deceased father for the purpose of making a will. After a hurried make-up, Dan jumps into bed and poses as the dying man. The schoolmaster arrives to make the will…but things don’t go quite as planned, with hilarious results!!
The curtain rose on the All Ireland Amateur Drama Festival on Friday 21st of February as the first festivals opened their doors to competing groups, adjudicators and of course the audience! Rush, Kilmuckridge and Newtownstewart maintained their traditions of being the first festivals on the circuit with plays in both the Open and Confined sections.
As the weeks go on, you can keep track of the competition on www.adci.ie, where you can download this Nightly planner or follow the festivals and results. The ADCI Facebook page is updated regularly with all the latest festival news.
Here in Ballyshannon, we’ll be paying close attention to the results in the Confined section to see who will be joining us in the Abbey Arts Centre in April.
If you’re planning to visit Ballyshannon for the festival, we’ve included a list of accommodation and dining options in the area on the website, and will be posting frequent updates on our own Facebook page.
We are delighted to announce that Rachel O’Connor will direct the one-act Irish comedy ‘A Bit of Land’, to be performed alongside ‘Faint Voices’ in March.
The cast consists of Tommy (30s), Dan (60s), Mary-Jane (middle-aged), Biddy (an old woman), Master Gormley (middle-aged).
The auditions will take place in the Green Room in the Abbey Arts Centre at 8pm.
As drama festival organisers around the country welcome this year’s competing groups, we’re looking forward to the excitement of the All Ireland Confined Finals in April! We’ll be hosting the top 9 plays in the Confined group as they compete for the All Ireland trophy in the Abbey Centre from April 17th to the 25th.
The draw to decide the running order of the festival will take place in the Abbey Centre on Saturday the 4th of April at 1pm. Following that, nightly tickets will be available online from April 6th (€18/€15). In the meantime, if you’d like to secure a season ticket, they will be available from March 1st by phone on 0719851375 for €90.
There are 21 groups participating in the Confined Group this year. You can follow all the action of the league table on www.adci.ie once the festivals begin to see which of these groups will be joining us in Ballyshannon!
Lislea Dramatic Players – “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest” by Kesey/Wasserman
Phoenix Players – “The Communication Cord” by Brian Friel.
The Knocks Drama Group – “ The Cavan Curse” by John Mc Manus
Enniskillen Theatre Co. – “ The Night Alive” by Conor Mc Pherson
Clonabogan Drama Circle – “The Two Loves of Gabriel Foley” by Jimmy Keary
Pomeroy Players- “Same Old Moon” by Geraldine Aron
Newtownstewart Theatre Co. – ”Shoot The Crow” by Owen Mc Cafferty
Clann Machua, Kiltymagh – ”Sive” by J.B. Keane
Sliabh Aughty Drama Group – ”The Outgoing Tide” by Bruce Graham
Glenamaddy Players – ”The Cripple of Inishmaan” by Martin Mc Donagh
Sillan Players, Shercock – “At the Black Pig’s Dyke” by Vincent Woods
Duleek Drama Group – ”The Blacksmith” by Michael Ferguson
Kilmuckridge Drama Group – ”Daughter from over the Water” by M.J Molloy
Wayside Players – “The Cripple of Inishmaan” by Martin Mc Donagh
Tinahely Variety Group -”Juno and the Paycock” by Sean O Casey
Skibbereen Theatre Society – ”Steel Magnolias” by Robery Harling
Mullingar Theatre Lab – ”One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest” by Kesey/Wasserman
Kilworth Dramatic Society – ”The Quiet Moment” by Mike Finn
Camross Drama Group – ”The Year of the Hiker” by J.B. Keane
Ray Leonard Players, Claremorris – “Beyond Therapy” by Christopher Durang
St. Dympna’s, Dromore – “The Beauty Queen of Leenane” by Martin Mc Donagh