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Update: additional relaxed performance added for Peter Pan

Due to demand we are now going to do an additional relaxed performance of Peter Pan on Sat 17 December at 4pm.

You can find out more about what a relaxed performance is here:

https://www.angrianan.com/relaxed-performance-of-peter-pan/

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An Grianán Youth Theatre – Halloween Part 2

On Saturday 29 October four of our youth theatre members travelled to Arnold’s Hotel in Dunfanaghy with tutor Nora Kavanagh to provide an afternoon of Halloween entertainment.

A big thank you to Angel Humm, Sarah Masterson, Adam Boyle and Kai McHugh who kindly donated their performance fee to An Grianán Youth Theatre.

An Grianán Youth Theatre's Angel Humm

An Grianán Youth Theatre’s Angel Humm

An Grianán Youth Theatre's Sarah Masterson and Kai McHugh at Arnold's in Dunfanaghy for Halloween.

Sarah Masterson and Kai McHugh

An Grianan Youth Theatre's tutor Nora Kavanagh.

An Grianan Youth Theatre’s tutor Nora Kavanagh.

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Assorted Horrors – An Grianán Youth Theatre Halloween performances Part 1

On Friday 28 October members of An Grianán Youth Theatre presented some spooky pre-show entertainment as part of an evening of Gothic themed drama and music which included the feature event Female Gothic from Dyad Productions.

Members of An Grianán Youth Theatre who took part in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016

Members of An Grianán Youth Theatre who took part in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016

The evening featured a recital of Edgar Allan Poe’s The Conqueror Worm by Jasper Kardos and Micaiah O’Muireadhaigh. Adam Boyle and Sarah Masterson performed another Poe classic Annabel Lee. Laramie Carey presented a solo performance of Emily Dickenson’s I Felt a Funeral, In My Brain. Oscar Murtagh and Fergal Lonergan performed The Creature’s Speech from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. The performances were directed by youth theatre facilitator Nora Kavanagh.

The Donegal Chamber Orchestra performing haunting music for Halloween at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

The Donegal Chamber Orchestra performing haunting music for Halloween at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

The youth theatre ensemble also performed as an assortment of druids, ghouls and zombies.

The Donegal Chamber Orchestra performed a wonderful selection of music including Assorted Horrors by Derek Ball, Grieg’s Aase’s Death from Peer Gynt and the truly spine tingling theme from Hitchcock’s Psycho by Bernard Hermann. A huge thank you to Victor Yélamo for the excellent choice of music.

An anonymous member of An Grianán Youth Theatre who took part in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016

An anonymous member of An Grianán Youth Theatre who took part in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Jasper Kardos recites Edgar Allan Poe's The Conqueror Worm at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Jasper Kardos recites Edgar Allan Poe’s The Conqueror Worm at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Laramie Carey recites Emily Dickinson's I Felt A Funeral, In My Brain at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Laramie Carey recites Emily Dickinson’s I Felt A Funeral, In My Brain at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Ultan Farrell performing in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre member Ultan Farrell performing in Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

The Donegal Chamber Orchestra performing haunting music for Halloween at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

The Donegal Chamber Orchestra performing haunting music for Halloween at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre members Angel Humm and Laramie Carey who performed at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016 in Halloween Gothic.

An Grianán Youth Theatre members Angel Humm and Laramie Carey who performed at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016 in Halloween Gothic.

An Grianán Youth Theatre members Jasper Kardos and Micaiah O'Muireadhaigh recites Edgar Allan Poe's The Conqueror Worm at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

An Grianán Youth Theatre members Jasper Kardos and Micaiah O’Muireadhaigh recites Edgar Allan Poe’s The Conqueror Worm at An Grianán Theatre on Fri 28 Oct 2016.

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Opera professionals arrive in Donegal for Strauss’s sparkling operetta

This week the North West Opera present Johann Strauss’s sparkling operetta Die Fledermaus. Like the champagne that flows through it, Die Fledermaus bubbles with uplifting music and comical moments from curtain up. 

The colourful romp follows 24 hours in the lives of a group of Viennese bourgeoisie where disguises, hoaxes and flirtation fuelled by copious amounts of champagne culminate in hilarious results – all set to Johann Strauss’s stirring and sumptuous orchestral score.

die.fledermaus.cast

An international cast of opera professionals has been arriving in Donegal over the last week, including German conductor Anton Zapf and his orchestral musicians, South African Tenor Arthur Swan, Dutch Bass-Baritone Frits Kamp and Northern Irish Bass David Robertson. They join the NWO’s resident sopranos Ann Jennings, Diana McLaughlin, Deborah Cunningham and Baritone Paul Martin.

Die Fledermaus soloists rehearsing with orchestra

North West Opera also have their strongest chorus to date, with 47 talented singers drawn from Donegal and Derry/Londonderry.

For more information about the musicians, cast and the final preparations for this fabulous show see Facebook North West Opera Ireland.

Die Fledermaus is on this Friday and Saturday 4 and 5 November at 8pm. Book now!

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Waving, Not Drowning, The Mental Health Roadshow

Join us this November for an innovative new theatre show looking at mental health from local company Bread and Roses Theatre.

One in four of us will have mental health problems at some stage in our lives. This simple statement throws up a host of questions:

Why?

What’s life like for the one in ten of us in Ireland suffering from depression?

For the family and friends of the 451 individuals who took their own lives last year?

Why aren’t we doing more to help those who become unwell, and to promote good mental health?

And, why is it ok to talk about diabetes, but so hard to talk about schizophrenia?

Bread and Roses Theatre Company’s pioneering new production ‘Waving, Not Drowning, The Mental Health Roadshow’ is an imaginative attempt to address these concerns.

A montage of original short plays, sketches and songs, this exuberant theatrical experiment will premiere at An Grianán Theatre Wednesday, November 23 at 8 pm.

Initiated by Mark McCollum, Tanya McLaughlin and Kathleen McCreery, the project began last January. Ten writers and actors were chosen to attend weekly workshops.

‘We all felt passionately about it, we had all been touched by it in some way,’ said Mark, ‘and a number of participants had professional experience in the mental health field.’

The group entered into an intensive period of research, interviewing users of the mental health services, and inviting guest speakers including a GP, a psychologist and a TD.

Kathleen, a trained counsellor as well as an experienced playwright and teacher of creative writing, facilitated the workshops and mentored the writers as they began to develop plots and characters. ‘We wanted to ensure that the voices of those who are struggling, and those who care for them and work with them are heard,’ she said. ‘We had no blueprint, and no idea what would come out of the process. I’m delighted to say that after months of hard work, we have been rewarded with some impressive scripts. The montage framework allows us to tackle a range of subjects, from bullying to bereavement, from social anxiety to self-harm.’

Left to right: Aoife Toner, Michael Devlin, Ronan Devlin and Anne Gallagher who perform in Waving Not Drowning by Bread and Roses Theatre at An Grianán Theatre November 2016.

Left to right: Aoife Toner, Michael Devlin, Ronan Devlin and Anne Gallagher who perform in Waving Not Drowning by Bread and Roses Theatre at An Grianán Theatre November 2016.

The creative team includes Natalia Colmenarejo, Niall Cranney, Aideen Devine, Anne Gallagher, Sinead Gallagher, Brenda Kelly, Cassie Riggs, Aoife Toner, and Kathleen herself. There’s a story about a young woman who hears voices, a stressed family doctor, a first-time mother with post-natal depression.

Heavy stuff, you might think, but as Tanya McLaughlin, production manager for the project points out, ‘There is a lot of humour too, some really funny situations and witty dialogue. People who saw our first production ‘Can’t Pay? Won’t Pay!’ last year at the Earagail Arts Festival and recall the company’s polished performance of Dario Fo’s classic farce won’t be disappointed.’

The cast comes from both sides of the border. Cassie, Anne and Aoife will be joined by Derry-based Ronan Carr, and by Michael Devlin, who showed his commitment to the cause of mental health when he raised over €5,000 for Pieta House walking the Pacific Crest Way from Mexico to British Columbia.

Tickets are €12.50 and €10 concessions, and block bookings of 10 or more will also get the discount.

Wednesday 23 November 2016
Suitable for ages 16+
Book now

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Donegal actor cast in Netflix show

Huge congratulations to Amybeth McNulty who has been cast in the lead role of the CBC/Netflix’s adaptation of Anne of Green Gables.

Amybeth is a member of our youth theatre and has attended classes and workshops at An Grianán for many years including our Performing Arts Summer School and the Ballet Ireland Summer School.

We are all absolutely thrilled for her and can’t wait to see the show!

Find out more here.

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Relaxed Performance of Peter Pan

An Grianán Theatre will hold a specially adapted Relaxed Performance of their Christmas Show Peter Pan on Wednesday 14th December at 12.30pm.

Update: Due to demand we are now going to do an additional relaxed performance of Peter Pan on Sat 17 December at 4pm.

What is a relaxed performance?

Relaxed Performances are specifically designed to welcome people who will benefit from a more relaxed performance environment, including, but not limited to, people with an Autism Spectrum Condition, sensory and communication disorders, or a learning disability.

  • There is a relaxed attitude to noise and movement and some small changes made to the light and sound effects.
  • Theatre lights will stay on and people will be warned of sudden noises.
  • For anyone overwhelmed during the performance, a “chill out” area will be provided in the upper foyer.
  • An easy way to understand the atmosphere is perhaps, ‘the opposite of the quiet carriage on a train’.

Why do a relaxed performances?

Many aspects of a standard theatre experience can cause difficulties for children. Busy foyers, unexpected music, lights going up and down and applause can all be unsettling. Even the interval can confuse because it may seem strange to leave the auditorium in the middle of an event.

These performances are for anyone who would benefit from a more relaxed performance environment, including people with an autistic spectrum condition, sensory or communication disorders, or a learning disability, or just those who are uncomfortable being in a darkly lit room, or those who feel they can’t sit quietly for an extended period of time.

Can everyone come to this performance?

Yes everyone is welcome, it’s important that those for whom it is intended get to share the experience with their peers and siblings. That’s the joy of a relaxed performance!

Relaxed Performances:
Wed 14 December at 12.30pm, Sat 17 December at 4pm.
Running time: approx 60 minutes
Tickets: €12/€10, family of four €36, schools & groups €8
To book please call the box office on 0749120777.

Peter Pan

This Christmas An Grianán Theatre Productions presents the classic tale of Peter Pan, the boy who wouldn’t grow up from Tues  13th to Sat 17th December. Join Peter and the Lost Boys as they take Wendy and her brothers on an adventure to Neverland where they will face down his nemesis Captain Hook!

With a main cast of twelve and a large chorus this’ll be a fast, action packed show: a bit pantomime, a bit musical and a lot of fun! Directed by Nora Kavanagh, with musical director Trudy O’Donnell.

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Assorted Horrors: Halloween Gothic at An Grianán Theatre

Join us for a very special night inspired by classic gothic literature on Friday 28 October headlined by hit theatre production Female Gothic at 8pm.

The evening begins from 7pm with a selection of suitably spooky music in the foyer from members of the Donegal Chamber Orchestra.

Senior members of An Grianán Youth Theatre will perform extracts from Frankenstein as well as classics from Edgar Allan Poe and Emily Dickenson to get audiences in the mood for the feature event of the evening: Female Gothic.

Female Gothic

Starting at 8pm in the auditorium, Female Gothic is an acclaimed theatre show from Olivier Award winning director Guy Masterson and performed by Rebecca Vaughan of Austen’s Women fame.

In the thrilling tradition of M R James and Edgar Allan Poe, this literary spine-chiller celebrates three lost gothic works from the great Victorian female writers.

An artist, gripped by the clutching fingers of a dead past; a scientist, defying nature in the dark realm of the senses; an expectant father, driven mad by creeping shadows…

In the unquiet darkness between life and death, a lone, haunted woman tells chilling tales of the macabre and terrifying, illuminating the curious frailties of human nature.

Female Gothic is presented by Dyad Productions, a UK based theatre that creates, produces and tours innovative yet classic theatre with a contemporary relevance. With emphasis on new writing and radical interpretations of existing text, Dyad’s acclaimed shows include Austen’s Women, Jane Eyre: An Autobiography and The Unremarkable Death of Marilyn Monroe

The schedule for the evening is:

From 7pm in the bar & foyer (free admission)

Music from the Donegal Chamber Orchestra featuring

Derek Ball (b. 1949) Assorted Horrors
Edvard Grieg (1843 – 1907) “Aase’s Death” from Peer Gynt Suite No.1
Bernard Herrmann (1911-1975) Psycho A Suite for Strings (1960)  ‘Psycho theme’

Gothic excerpts by An Grianán Youth Theatre featuring:

The Creature’s Speech from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, The Conqueror Worm and Annabel Lee by Edgar Allan Poe, I Felt a Funeral in My Brain by Emily Dickenson, and other surprises.

8pm in the auditorium – admission €15/€12 Book now!
Dyad Productions present
Female Gothic
running time: 75 minutes
NB: Running time for all the evening’s events will be a little over two hours give or take a scare or two!

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Programme announced for the Letterkenny One Act Festival

Amateur drama societies from across the island of Ireland will converge in Letterkenny this November for the One Act Festival.

This year’s festival features the following plays:

Thursday 10 Nov 2016 at 7.30pm

Two Sisters by Caroline Harding
Rush Dramatic Society, Rush

Homeless by Kieran Doyle
Tadhg An Astna Players, Cork

Lone Star by James McClure
Ballina Dramatic Society, Mayo

Friday 11 Nov 2016 at 7.30pm

A Galway Girl by Geraldine Aron
Bangor Drama Group, Down

Hardboiled by Jonathan Shortall
No Drama Theatre, Dublin

The Problem by A. R. Gurney
Glenmaddy Players, Galway

Saturday 12 Nov 2016 at 7pm

Tom Clarke’s One True Love by Killian McGuinness
Corn Mill Theatre Group, Leitrim

Subtraction by Kevin McFillen
Lucan Drama Group, Dublin

Pizzazz by Hugh Leonard
Gunpowder Productions, Cork

Followed by adjudication and presentation of awards.

Adjudicator: Paula Dempsey

Plays last from 30 mins to 55 mins max.

Tickets are €8 (€6 concession) nightly or you can become a Festival Friend. Friends membership for a couple is €30 and entitles you to two free tickets for each night of the festival. A single Friends membership is €15 and entitles you to one free ticket for each night of the festival. Friends memberships can be purchased at our box office on 074 912 0777.

The Letterkenny One Act Festival is kindly supported by Pramerica.

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Donegal! Are you ready for Lexie?

Donegal may never be the same again – a one man tsunami is planning an invasion of Letterkenny!

As an advanced warning to the people of Donegal we are advised to tell you that Lexie is on his way in your direction and like the tsunami he will leave a trail of disruption in his path….. Half reared in the hills of Donegal, Lexie is one of the stars in the forthcoming production of ‘Packie’s Wake‘ which opens in An Grianán Theatre on the 20th October for three nights. But be warned the impact of Lexie is not for the faint hearted as he will confront the audience with his tales of his constant battle with bodily dysfunction and ‘9 wains’. People in Derry call him ‘Lexie Bomb Scare’ as he can empty a room in 20 seconds.

Letterkenny native Paddy Taylor plays Lexie in Eddie Kerr's hit comedy Packie's Wake at An Grianán Theatre October 2016.

Letterkenny native Paddy Taylor plays Lexie in Eddie Kerr’s hit comedy Packie’s Wake at An Grianán Theatre October 2016.

Lexie is the latest character to invade the wake of Packie Pearse Devlin; the well known Derry layabout, part time philosopher and full time drunk. Packie found himself ‘stone dead’ on the first day of the 1994 ceasefire and has been telling audiences all around the world what death is like and what he thinks of the ‘whole carry-on’ since. The last time ‘Packie’s Wake’ played An Grianan Theatre tickets were as hard to find as a Shinner at a DUP comedy night so make sure you have your ticket and don’t let that happen again. Chronic hypochondriac Lexie boasts 37 diseases some not even known to medical science yet and more ailments will appear as he knows how to pronounce them.

By the way the hilarious character Lexie is played by Letterkenny’s own exiled son Paddy Taylor and he brings the house down with his outrageous performance:  ‘I have played some really great comedy characters in my time but I never played anything like Lexie Bomb Scare…. he is such as comic dream for an actor and I can’t wait to introduce the people of Donegal to this ‘character’.. I am sure that my family will be cringing in the front row as I bring Lexie to life on the stage of the An Grianan.. I can’t wait but is Donegal ready for Lexie?  I promise you a absolute treat so don’t miss it!!’

Packie’s Wake
Thur 20 to Fri 22 October at 8pm
Tickets: €20/€16 Book now!

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