The 67th Ballyshannon Drama Festival opens on Saturday the 9th of March and runs to Sunday the 17th of March. We have another nine nights of fantastic theatre lined up for you, well worth the price of the season ticket! Check out the Festival webpage for more information on each production.

67th BDS Festival 2019TimeTable_2019_BDS

Importance 1895 PlaybillHappy Valentine’s Day everyone, and Happy Birthday Earnest! Not only is today the most romantic of all days, the 14 of February also marks the anniversary of the very first production of ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’! The play was first performed in St. James’ Theatre, London, on this day in 1895, as you can see from the attached playbill. The fact that the play is still keeping audiences entertained 124 years later is testament to its brilliance and Wilde’s comic wit.
Come along to the Abbey Arts Centre tonight to celebrate with us! Tickets €12/€10. Curtain at 8.30pm.

IMG-20190111-WA0004Ballyshannon Drama Society will present Oscar Wilde’s classic and much-loved comedy ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ in the Abbey Arts Centre on February 12th, 13th, 14th and 16th, before heading off to eight more festivals in the All Ireland Amateur Drama Festival.

Oscar Wilde’s wildly entertaining comedy sparkles with dazzling wordplay and hilariously unlikely situations. This “trivial comedy for serious people” features two carefree bachelors, Jack and Algernon, each with a carefully hidden double life. But when Algernon discovers that Jack has been posing as a man named Ernest to escape to the city, he promptly travels to Jack’s country estate to pose as the fictional figure himself! Silliness ensues with whimsical ingénues, jealous fiancées, indomitable dowagers, and the most famous handbag in theatre history. The Ballyshannon Drama Society’s ingenious production of this timeless classic offers the unmissable opportunity to see what the London Telegraph calls “the most perfect comedy in the English language.”


The cast includes several well-known, multi-award winning Ballyshannon regulars, and a few new faces!

  • Lane—Kevin Lilly
  • Algernon Moncrieff—Sean Donegan
  • John Worthing, J.P.—Terence McEneaney
  • Lady Bracknell—Rachel O’Connor
  • Hon. Gwendolen Fairfax—Louise Larkin
  • Miss Prism—Trish Keane
  • Cecily Cardew—Sinead Luke
  • Rev. Canon Chasuble, D.D.—Tony Liston
  • Merriman—Mark Kirby

Tickets are €10 on Feb. 12th and €12 on the 13th, 14th and 16th (concession €10). To book, call 0719851375.

EarnestWe are delighted to announce the cast for our upcoming circuit production ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ by Oscar Wilde (in order of future appearance!):

Algernon Moncrieff – Sean Donegan
Lane – Kevin Lilly
Jack Worthing – Terence McEneaney
Lady Bracknell – Rachel O’Connor
Gwendolen Fairfax – Louise Larkin
Miss Prism – Trish Keane
Cecily Cardew – Sinead Luke
Rev. Canon Chasuble, D. D. – Tony Liston
Merriman – Mark Kirby

The show will open in the Abbey Arts Centre on February 12th and continue on the 13th, 14th and 16th, before heading out on the road to festivals around the country.
Thanks to all who turned up for auditions. It was great to see some new faces in the Abbey Centre. Hopefully we’ll see you all again at the auditions for our late spring production!

Ballyshannon Drama Society is delighted to announce plans to enter Oscar Wilde’s brilliant satirical comedy ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ in this year’s All Ireland amateur drama festival.

There will be two open auditions: Thursday October 11th at 7.30pm and Monday October 15th at 7.30 in the Abbey Centre. All welcome. Bring your best English accent!

A copy of the script can be downloaded here: ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ by Oscar Wilde

or read here: ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ by Oscar Wilde (Gutenberg Project)

The character list is as follows:

  • Jack Worthing
    A young gentleman from the country, in love with Gwendolen Fairfax.
  • Algernon Moncrieff
    A young gentleman from London, the nephew of Lady Bracknell, in love with Cecily Cardew.
  • Gwendolen Fairfax
    A young lady, loved by Jack Worthing.
  • Lady Bracknell
    A society lady, Gwendolen’s mother.
  • Cecily Cardew
    A young lady, the ward of Jack Worthing.
  • Miss Prism
    Cecily’s governess
  • The Reverend Canon Chasuble
    The priest of Jack’s parish
  • Lane
    Algernon’s butler
  • Merriman
    Jack’s servant.

Plot summary

Jack and Algernon are wealthy gentlemen. Jack (known to Algernon as Ernest) lives a respectable life in the country providing an example to his young ward Cecily. Algernon lives in luxury in London and has invented an imaginary invalid friend (Bunbury) whom he visits in the country whenever an unappealing social engagement presents itself. Jack has also invented a character – a wayward younger brother called Ernest whom he uses as pretext for going up to London and enjoying himself.

Jack wants to marry Algernon’s cousin Gwendolen, but must first convince her mother, Lady Bracknell, of the respectability of his parents. For Jack, having been abandoned in a handbag at Victoria station, this is quite a difficult task.

Algernon visits Jack’s house in the country and introduces himself to Cecily as Ernest, knowing that Cecily is already fascinated by tales of Ernest’s wickedness. He further wins her over and they become engaged.  Shortly after, Jack arrives home announcing Ernest’s death. This sets off a series of farcical events. Cecily and Gwendolen have a genteel stand-off over which of them has a prior claim on ‘Ernest’. Jack and Algernon vie to be christened Ernest. Eventually, Jack discovers that his parents were Lady Bracknell’s sister and brother-in-law and that he is, in fact, Algernon’s older brother, called Ernest. The two sets of lovers are thus free to marry.

During these events the characters of  Canon Chasuble and Cecily’s governess Miss Prism have also fallen in love, and in the best tradition of the well-made play the story ends with all the loose ends tied up and everyone set to live happily ever after.

See you at the auditions!

Don’t miss ‘Play On’, the side-splitting new comedy from Ballyshannon Drama Society, which continues Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday this week.

Warning! ‘Play On’ may seriously affect your health! After last night’s hilarious opening performance, there have been reports of tears streaming down faces, sides bursting with laughter, and audience members worrying about their heart conditions due to too much hilarity!!
Last night’s opening show was an absolutely fantastic way to end months of rehearsal, and to begin the run of 4 nights (only 3 left!) in the Abbey Centre. The audience were laughing from the moment the curtain opened, and continued to laugh all the way to the final curtain…the final final curtain, that is.
‘Play On’ follows a really very amateur group of actors as they rehearse for a murder mystery written by an over-zealous local writer. Directed by Rachel O’Connor and starring many well-known local faces, this show is a fantastic way to end a lovely day.
Don’t miss it!! Curtain at 8.30. Tickets available at the door.

‘Play On’ by Rick Abbott is the hilarious new comedy from Ballyshannon Drama Society which is guaranteed to have them rolling in the aisles every night! Directed by Rachel O’Connor and featuring many familiar faces, this promises to be a great night’s entertainment for all. The story follows an amateur drama group and their trials and tribulations in trying to put on a murder mystery play in their local theatre. The show opens on Tuesday May 22nd and continues Wednesday 23rd, Thursday 24th and Saturday 26th (no show on Friday) at 8.30 pm nightly.

Play On poster

And the Winners are…

THE PATSY CROAL BLUE RIBAND: ‘Sylvia’ by Prosperous


FIRST PLACE (Maureen Gallagher Award): ‘Sylvia’, Prosperous

SECOND PLACE (C. J. King Award): ‘Beneath An Irish Sky’, Letterkenny

THIRD PLACE (Jim Flynn Award): ‘Dancing At Lughnasa’, Lifford Players

BEST PRODUCER (John Stephens Cup): Lurleen Duggan, Prosperous

BEST ACTOR (H.J. Travers Award): Robert Massey, Prosperous

BEST ACTRESS (Eoin Carney Award): Ashleigh O’Neill, Prosperous


FIRST PLACE (Commercial Hotel Cup): ‘Buried Child’, Phoenix Players, Tubbercurry

SECOND (Catherine Breslin Award): Sillan Players, ‘Una Pooka’

THIRD: Newtownstewart, ‘Meeting at Menin Gate’

BEST PRODUCER (Hugh & Mary Daly Cup): Peter Davey, Phoenix Players, Tubbercurry

BEST ACTRESS (Kathleen Fagan Award): Rebecca Farrington, Kiltimagh

BEST ACTOR (Saimer Cup/Paddy Mc Loone Award): Pat Feeley, Phoenix Players, Tubbercurry


BEST SET (Mary Monaghan): Prosperous, ‘Sylvia’

BEST STAGE MANAGER (Maureen Kane Award): Siobhan Keogh, Prosperous

LIGHTING (Margaret Mc Ginley Award): Ciarán Healy, Prosperous


1) Corn Mill – ‘Waiting for Godot’

2) The cross in ‘Una Pooka’, Sillan Players

3) The dance in ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’, Lifford Players