News

Fiesta playwright on Highland Radio this Tuesday

Tune into Shaun Doherty on Highland Radio this Tuesday 15 April for an interview with Fiesta playwright Guy Le Jeune.

Guy is due on air around midday and will be discussing his work so far on this new drama commission for the Earagail Arts Festival.

Fiesta is a celebration of the dancers, the chancers and the lovers who graced the Fiesta Ballroom, Letterkenny – the famous dancehall venue that formed a hugely important part of the social history of Donegal and the wider North West region.

It will be staged at the Earagail Arts Festival from Sat 12 to Mon 14 July. Find out more here.

Fiesta is a new drama commission co-produced by Earagail Arts Festival, An Grianán Theatre and Donegal County Council Arts Office and supported by the Arts Council of Ireland, Failte Ireland and Donegal County Council.

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Press Release: Plaza Renovation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Press launch Wed 30 April at 11 AM at An Grianán Theatre

Mayor Paschal Blake’s Project for 2014 – An Grianán Theatre to receive facelift

Letterkenny Town Mayor Paschal Blake will unveil the plans to renovate the large plaza to the front of An Grianán Theatre at a press launch on Wed 30 April at 11am.

This area is receiving a facelift under the supervision of Town Gardener David Donnelly and Town Engineer John McCarron. With An Grianán Theatre now 15 years old, this area was in need of renovation with some hard winters taking a particular toll on the tiles and steps. Work has already commenced to rectify these problems and as the project progresses the plaza will be made more attractive with new trees, plant pots and benches. There will also be a new lighting scheme incorporating recessed ground lights as well as flood lighting of the front of the theatre.

New Town Clock

Workmen do a test install of a mock up version of the new town clock on Mon 7 April. Designed by Christy Keeney, the finished clock is due to be installed very shortly.

Workmen do a test install of a mock up version of the new town clock on Mon 7 April at An Grianán Theatre, Letterkenny. Designed by Christy Keeney, the finished clock is due to be installed very shortly.

The centrepiece of this new scheme will be the new town clock, specially commissioned from local artist Christy Keeney and constructed by Joe Bonnar Metalcraft.  This central feature will have a prominent place above the door of the theatre’s main entrance. The finishing touches to the scheme includes paint work for the theatre’s facade with expert advice on the colour scheme provided by the consultants Anne McKeever and Clare McDonough from La Maison Interior Design.

Mayor Paschal Blake, who is coming to the end of his term of office has chosen this particular project to mark his mayorship. The project is due to be completed in May ahead of the international Irish Aerial Dance Fest in June and the Earagail Arts Festival in July.

An Grianán Theatre opened in October 1999 and rapidly earned a reputation for artistic excellence and accessibility under its Director Patricia McBride who has steered the theatre from day one. Now established as an integral part of Donegal’s cultural landscape, An Grianán has worked in close partnership with other key players, both within the county and on the national stage, to invigorate and develop the local arts scene. Boasting a 383 capacity auditorium, this state of the art facility is committed to presenting the best in drama, music, comedy and much more. The theatre is open to the public all day where they can avail of the excellent café and bar, view art exhibitions and attend some of the outstanding shows which it hosts. An Grianán is somewhat unique among regional theatre in also producing its own quality touring Drama productions.

An Grianán Theatre is a registered charity and receives annual funding from the Donegal County Council, the Letterkenny Town Council, the Dept of Social Protection and the Arts Council/Chomhairle Ealaion.

Please RSVP to  marketing@angrianan.com

ENDS

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Drama Classes for Children at An Grianán Theatre

Our next drama course for children starts on Saturday 26 April and is now open for booking.

Our classes are suitable for children 7 to 13 years old and beginners are always welcome! At An Grianán Theatre our emphasis is firmly on creative play. Our classes feature an inventive and fun mix of drama games and exercises, voice work, movement and basic stage craft. Children are encourage to improvise and creatively engage with the material provided by our tutor Nora Kavanagh.

The course will run for 10 weeks every Saturday until the end of June. You can book over the phone by calling us on 074 912 0777 or book online here.

Our current  drama course reaches its conclusion this Sat 12 April. We are holding an open house starting with a viewed  rehearsal of the Grimm fairytale Fearless John on stage with the 7 to 9 year old group.  From 11.15am the 10 to 13 year old class will perform rehearsed readings of short plays on the stage and in the upper and lower foyers.  Events in the auditorium will finish no later than 1pm to allow the stage to be prepared for our  evening show by Ruby Wax.

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Jason Black event now open for booking

An inspiring talk from Everest mountaineer Jason Black, presented by the Letterkenny Lions. “From rock bottom to the top of the world” is a special event that will see Jason open up to an audience for the first time about his life-changing journey which culminated in him reaching the summit of Everest on May 19 2013.

“We are living in an environment with a lot of gloom and doom. Everyone has their own Everest to climb, whether it is suicide, depression, lack of work or lack of money.

“I will speak of my own challenges in life and I’m sure people will draw the parallels. I’m nervous about speaking to an audience because I will be opening up about things I’ve never spoke of before. I will be showing pictures of the climb for the first time and speaking of how in the face of adversity we have to look deep within ourselves to meet our dreams.

“To young people the message is there is nothing that can’t be achieved, you need to focus on it, you need to have a plan and you need to chase your dreams. That is what I want to bring back to the youth of the county,” he added. Continue reading..

Jason Black: From Rock Bottom to the Top of the World, Wed 30 April 2014. Book now.

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Mark Thomas Venue Change

In our own act of minor dissent we’ve moved Friday night’s Mark Thomas gig to our lovely next door neighbors, the Regional Cultural Centre. Your ticket will still be valid for admission but please note that the seats are not numbered in the Cultural Centre so it’ll be first come, first served on the night.

And to whet your appetite for Friday night here’s an interview with Mark from yesterday’s Irish Times:

Mark Thomas: rebel with guffaws.

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Auditions for Fiesta

An Grianán Theatre will soon be holding auditions for its forthcoming production Fiesta, due to be staged at July’s Earagail Arts Festival.

Fiesta’s director Sean Donegan is looking for actors, male and female, of any age and from all walks of life, to take part in this show which celebrates Letterkenny’s famous Fiesta Ballroom.

Fiesta is a new drama commission co-produced by Earagail Arts Festival, An Grianán Theatre and Donegal County Council Arts Office and supported by the Arts Council of Ireland, Failte Ireland and Donegal County Council.

It is inspired by the story of Letterkenny’s legendary dancehall venue which formed such an important part of the social history of Donegal and the wider North West region. It will be one of the feature highlights of this year’s 26th Earagail Arts Festival (12-26 July 2014).

The theatre would like to meet skilled actors with some amateur and/or professional acting experience. NB: all principal performers in this production will receive financial renumeration.

If you would like to audition, please email a CV and photograph to thefiestaballroom@gmail.com or send to An Grianán Theatre, Port Rd, Letterkenny.

  • Please write clearly in the subject line ” Application to Audition for Fiesta”.
  • Your CV should summarise acting experience and mention any singing, dancing and music experience.
  • Your photograph should be recent, in a natural pose and from the shoulders up. It doesn’t matter if the photo is in colour or black and white and it does NOT have to be a professional acting headshot.

Successful applicants will receive an email inviting them to audition on Thursday 1st May between 2pm and 9pm at the Regional Cultural Centre in Letterkenny. Auditions will be held in groups and will last approximately one hour.

In your email please indicate any times you are NOT available between 2pm and 9pm on the audition day.

Please note that all applicants must be at least 18 years of age.

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Sweet Fiesta Memories: Got a story to share?

Do you have any stories of the Fiesta Ballroom from 1962 to the Roller Disco years? Do you remember the Banana Lemonade and the Club biscuits, the music and the mirror balls? Do you remember who you danced with and what tunes were playing? Do you remember the stewards, the chairs, the sounds and the smells? Did you meet your husband or your wife there? Did you trip, stumble, shake or twist to the music? If you have any stories, then we would love to hear from you.

If you’d like to lend your story to us then please get in touch with the project coordinator, Guy Barriscale on 086 832 6157 or e-mail thefiestaballroom@gmail.com.

Fiesta is a new  drama commission co-produced by Earagail Arts Festival, An Grianán Theatre and Donegal County Council Arts Office.

It is a celebration of the dancers, the chancers and the lovers who graced the Fiesta Ballroom in Letterkenny, the famous dancehall venue that formed a hugely important part of the social history of Donegal and the wider North West region. Fiesta will be one of the theatre highlights of this year’s 26th Earagail Arts Festival. (12-26 July 2014).

This new production is supported by the Arts Council of Ireland, Failte Ireland and Donegal County Council.

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Fiesta: An Grianán’s new community drama project is looking for participants

An Grianán Theatre in association with the Earagail Arts Festival is launching a new community theatre drama training project on Wednesday evenings, 6:30pm to 9pm. The first session will be on Wednesday 9 April. Sessions will be facilitated by actor/director Sean Donegan and dance/drama facilitator Aoife Toner.

The sessions will consist of an introduction to basic acting technique and classes will be suitable for beginners but should also be engaging for performers with a bit more experience. Participants in these classes may be invited to perform in a large-scale community theatre production in July which will be one of the highlights of the Earagail Arts Festival programme. Performances are scheduled for An Grianán Theatre from 12 – 15 July.

About Fiesta
Fiesta  is a celebration of the dancers, the chancers and the lovers who graced the Fiesta Ballroom, Letterkenny – the famous dancehall venue that formed a hugely important part of the social history of Donegal and the wider North West region. Fiesta will be one of the theatre highlights of this year’s 26th Earagail Arts Festival (12-26 July 2014).

The play will require a ‘chorus’ of actors to play the crowds attending the dance, so there will be some training given in the various dance forms that would have been seen in the Fiesta over the years. Actors in the chorus may also have some small amounts of dialogue.

How to take part
If you would like to come along and find out more – please email a paragraph on why you might like to participate in the project – e.g. what you could offer, what you hope to get out of it. Your paragraph should be no more than 250 words and should be emailed to: thefiestaballroom@gmail.com

This should be submitted by Monday 31st March at 5pm.

From those who apply a group of 24 people will be selected to attend on Wed 9 April.

(NB: Make sure your paragraph is 250 words or less or it will not be read. Make sure you put the text in the main body of the email – attachments will not be read. There is no need to send any CVs or photographs. Don’t worry if writing is not your strong suit, just do a list or bullet-points – you are not being selected on how well you can write, we just want to know you are keen to take part.)

If you know someone you think might like to get involved – tell them about the project as well.

Please note that the show will also feature a number of experienced performers playing the main roles. Auditions for these roles will take place after Easter, more information to follow.

Fiesta  is a new drama commission co-produced by Earagail Arts Festival, An Grianán Theatre and Donegal County Council Arts Office and supported by the Arts Council of Ireland, Failte Ireland and Donegal County Council.

Read more