You may have noticed our new series of brochure covers, featuring local people, our first was Angel Humm from Portsalon and the current brochure features Letterkenny man John D. Ruddy.
We asked John what An Grianán means to him.
“I grew up in a house watching the John Player Tops and Little Shop of Horrors. I grew up in a house of the Rainbow Theatre Group and variety shows in the Community Games. I grew up in the house with the woman who helped bring Caisleáin Óir to the stage and brought us all along for the ride! I remember the opening night of An Grianán Theatre. I was 10 years old and I remember the LMDG’s Magic of the Musicals. I remember LMS’s Jesus Christ Superstar. I remember Familie Flöz’s Teatro Delusio and Restorante Immortale. I remember so many shows on that stage. I first performed on that massive stage in 2000 in children’s chorus of Caisleáin Óir. In 2013, I’d play Cearrbhach in the same show, and get my favourite photo with me and my wee mammy taken in the green room! I’ve long lost count of how many times I’ve performed on that stage; pantomimes, musicals with the LMDG, and of course The 39 Steps. When we were out on tour, it was always a pleasure to play the home pitch. I knew the dimensions, I knew the acoustics, and as I turned pro, it was even more satisfying to return not just to the home stage, but the team behind the magic, the family of An Grianán Theatre that keeps this stage in the North West one of the best! An Grianán has always supported me as I have grown professionally; through my acting in their many productions, directing the Youth Theatre in Black Adder Goes Forth, and now writing, with my upcoming Manny Man Does the History of Ireland On Stage in October 2018! An Grianán is the theatre of Letterkenny and the theatre of my heart!“
Sat 2 December
Due to An Grianán’s packed schedule this weekend we have had to temporarily relocate this Saturday’s drama classes to Pinehill Studios on the Mountaintop. Class times remain the same.
Sat 9 December
We are back in the theatre for the final class of the year. This will be our end of course showcase.
Can all students please be at the theatre for 10.30am.
Showcase: 12.30pm in the auditorium.
We wish to recruit the following staff under the Community Employment Scheme:
Box Office Assistant
Front of House Ushers
Community Employment Rates and Conditions apply. Please note the eligible age for participation on Community Employment is 21 years. Please contact your local Department of Social Protection office for details of any exceptions to this.
After sold out tours in Ireland, London, across Europe, and Australia, Michael Keegan Dolan’s genre-defying contemporary reimagining of one of the most famous ballets in the world comes to An Grianán in Spring 2018.
Daithi Ramsay, An Grianán Theatre’s Marketing Manager, saw Loch na hEala/ Swan Lake at the Clonmel Junction Festival in July 2017:
“I had intended after the show to go to the festival club. Instead I walked the mile and a half back to the house I was staying in, open mouthed, silent. I sat in this silence for a long time processing what I’d just seen. It was the most visceral theatre experience I’ve ever shared. It integrates the music, drama and dance fully, and each of the performers excels. The story, such as it is, flows around the performers, anchored by Mikel Murfi.
“The story draws from the Children of Lír and Swan Lake, which they have firmly rooted in the bogs of the Irish midlands. There is a lovely mythical Irish quality to much of it but for me it’s the influence of the tragic story of Bridgie Cleary that stayed with me. The intensity of these pieces will stay with me for a very long time, and Mikel Murfi’s expressions in particular. As will remain my surprise at the many unexpected moments, some of them so beautiful and uplifting. This is the very best that theatre has to offer you really should come and see it.
“From where I sat in the front row I looked around at the audience: everyone was sitting forward, hands on their knees, rapt. When it was funny they laughed loudly and naturally; when it was disturbing they were on edge; when it was uplifting they were overjoyed. I wish I had photos of their faces to show you. At the end many wiped away tears while smiling. It was as if we had been plugged straight into the mains of the company and the show’s creator Michael Keegan Dolan and then all of a sudden we were released, but the feeling, the emotions, the thoughts remained.”
Swan Lake/Loch na hEala can be seen at An Grianan on Wed 31 Jan and Thur 1 Feb 2018. See the event page for further information.
The North West Opera return to Glenveagh Castle for their annual evening of Christmas carols on Fri 1 and Sat 2 December.
They will perform traditional Christmas carols sung in 4 part harmony by the chorus of North West Opera led by professional soprano Ann Jennings.
Features beloved works such a O Holy Night and Silent Night and many other favourites.
Narrated by Highland Radio’s Donal Kavanagh.
Tickets are €19.50 which includes refreshments (mince pies, gingerbread & non-alcoholic mulled wine) or if you wish to skip the goodies you can see the concert only for €17.
The performance begins at 8.30pm and the bus over to the castle from the visitors centre runs every 15 mins from 7.30pm.
Tickets are available exclusively at An Grianán Theatre’s box office on 0749120777 or online here. If you book over the phone or online please note that you do not have to call to the theatre to collect your tickets in advance as we will send them to the venue on the night.
Coming to An Grianán | Tuesday 21st November – Joseph O’Connor’s gripping story of revenge and forgiveness.
“A lesson in theatre magic … captures an extraordinary and devastating story ” Irish Daily Mail | “Vital theatre” Sunday Business Post | “This emotional tour de force honours the author, and, most of all, the victims of The Famine and the coffin ships” Irish Independent | “Truly sensuous, ebullient, and multifaceted” Irish Times | “Unquestionably an exquisite piece of theatre ” Examiner.com | “Gorgeously assembled theatre ” Irish Times
Moonfish Theatre’s critically-acclaimed, sell-out success Star of the Sea is touring Ireland and the US this autumn, with a performance at An Grianán on Tuesday 21st November. Based on Joseph O’Connor’s epic best-selling novel, this story of love, murder, revenge and forgiveness in the time of the Famine is back by popular demand. An unmissable piece of Irish theatre, Star of the Sea was a sell-out hit of the Galway International Arts Festival 2014, which was followed by a packed tour across Ireland in 2015. This will be one of the last opportunities to see the show as this will be its final tour with Moonfish.
Star of the Sea tells the story of a famine ship sailing from Cobh to the promised land of New York in the winter of 1847. On board are passengers with secrets to hide – a silent maidservant, a ruined lord, and a murderer on the run – characters whose lives and fates are far more intertwined than they realise. Moving between the wild landscape of Connemara, grimy London streets, and the claustrophobic confines of the famine ship, this sweeping production from the award-winning Moonfish Theatre charts the lives of the three characters, from the childhoods that shaped them to their final, fateful journey.
O’Connor’s novel combines elements of thriller, mystery, romance, and Gothic suspense tale, and this innovative and much-loved theatrical re-telling has been adapted from his work by Moonfish’s ensemble cast. The company’s Star of the Sea sees language, movement, imagery, live sound effects, song, traditional music and six performers conjure the worlds of the characters. One of the remarkable things about the stage adaptation of the novel is the fact that Moonfish using their signature style of bi-lingual theatre have given voice to the characters whose first language would have been Irish. Audiences are invited to experience Irish as a theatrical language, translated continuously through subtitles, movement and song.
“I found their version of (the story) and their presentation of the adaptation just so moving and very emotional, and to hear those words spoken in the Irish language, was really something that I’ll never forget.” Joseph O’Connor
DEVISED & PERFORMED BY:
Mairead Ni Chroinin, Ionia Ni Chroinin, Grace Kiely , Zita Monahan, Morgan Cooke, Sean T O’Mealleigh
An Grianán, Letterkenny, Donegal
Tuesday 21st November 8pm
€18/€15/school groups €10
W: angrianan.com | T: 074 912 0777
Moonfish Theatre is an award-winning theatre ensemble. Based in Galway, they create work in English and Irish, for young people and adults. In 2013 Moonfish was awarded the Stewart Parker Trust / BBC Northern Ireland Irish Language Theatre award for its acclaimed production of Pinocchio – A Nightmare.
The North West Opera return to An Grianán this October for an evening of beautiful melody and light-hearted banter with their production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Gondoliers on Fri 27th & Sat 28th October.
Packed with crowd-pleasing vocal arrangements and tongue-in-cheek humour, The Gondoliers is a tale of the search for the heir to the throne of the fictional state of Barataria and all the plot twists that follow before the matter is resolved.
William Gilbert’s laugh-out-loud lyrics and Arthur Sullivan’s sumptuous and often giddy music will be performed by a combination of professional singers, orchestra and a veritable feast of local talent.
Billy Patterson and soprano Ann Jennings play The Duchess and Duke of Plaza-Toro in The Gondoliers.
Soprano Ann Jennings and former LMS director Billy Patterson play The Duchess and Duke of Plaza-Toro, combining fabulous vocals with natural comic flair.
The eponymous Gondoliers are portrayed by professional tenor Arthur Swan and James McLaughlin formerly of the D’Oyly Carte opera.
Donal Kavanagh, a devotee of all things Gilbert & Sullivan, is relishing the role of the Grand Inquisitor Don Alhambra.
Fresh from his success in the lead as the Phantom of the Opera, Robert Kelly takes on the role of Luiz, secretly in love with Casilda played by professional soprano Diana McLaughlin.
Following North West Opera’s critically acclaimed and tremendously entertaining production of Die Fledermaus last year, Deigh Reid is returning to employ his directorial, musical and comic instincts.
Rehearsals for The Gondoliers
Ann Jennings Musical & Artistic Director of NWO is excited about having assembled such a talented team: “The Gondoliers contains some of Sullivan’s most inspired music – all the principals have fantastic pieces and the chorus have their fair share of glorious music too. We have put together a great cast that can do justice to the score but also have great comic acting ability to make the most of Gilbert’s humour”
Not the type to sit on her heels, Ann Jennings will then be jetting off to Europe in December where she has been signed up as Musical Director to lead a team of West End singers & dancers, in a new Andrew Lloyd Weber International gala, putting the soloists through their paces both vocally and musically.
Fáilte go dtí Amharclann An Ghrianán! Located in Letterkenny, Co Donegal, An Grianán Theatre is an integral part of the county’s thriving cultural life and a flagship venue in the North West of Ireland.
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