The Race is On!

Well here we are in the ocean busy-land. No lifeboats. No whistles. No lovers to let us lie on the door by ourselves.

Naw, we’re all good. The Volvo Ocean Race ( performance propped up a few days earlier, so naturally we’re a bit tight for time. As is life. I must say I have felt myself getting a bit lazy with the production side of things, juggling work, rehearsals, exercise, a casual new-found addiction to clips of Frasier on YouTube, and Sam and Ciara’s (fruitful) attempt at getting me into The West Wing and making me a less embarrassing human being to our generation, and to my parents. Apart from the odd missing out on social events, and having to hang washed underwear all over our kitchen despite fears of making my housemates blush, the show will be right on track with a bit more effort, I wager.

Oh Frasier, how could you steer me wrong?

We’re now performing on Thursday 5th, alongside our two, new, lovely ladies, Cait Canavan and Aoife Noone. Welcome to the cast gals…. You’ve tangled yourself into some kind of messy brain. Hoping to mop the whole place with some organisation, and more disciplined scheduling for my own part, to keep us going. Ironically, the most difficult thing for me has been deciding songs for the production. Picking a song with a good atmosphere, when said atmosphere has already been decided is tough stuff to be brief. We’ve gone from songs passed down from our Irish forefathers, to the Gorillaz, to just about everything under the sun, but I think we’ve our hands on it now. Sam and Muireann are bringing in some instruments, so between them, myself and Martin, I’m hoping to have a prototype song hammered down.

Aaah, the joys of getting stuff done. Cork has been emailed about our cancellation of the 7th. Why? Travel and budget. The joys of travelling with an 18 strong crew, is indeed the cost of each one of us little brats! Thankfully, I’ll be beginning our ThereisLiftoff! campaign soon, publicising online and through contacting our theatres about local participation in each show, and transport needs. So if you didn’t get to donate online or in a fiskal form, worry not. We have tonnes of ways for you all to participate in the lovely lovely show. Things like, lifts from A to B, being the main one!  I’m posting up a rota soon with each trip listed. So basically, depending on the journey, you could get a poster and picture, or a ticket to the show in exchange for acting as a roadie! What could possibly go wrong?

Say na’an

So really, at the moment I’m pretty much the worst enemy of the show, getting distracted every time I sit down to do a bit of Admin… having said that third shiny and new, new lady has been called in: LAURA HICKS! Aka, no bs with a pretty face. Gotta love a winning combination. Laura’s more or less the company Moderator, and company producer. And at the moment, taking care of all of you LOVELY fundit funders!

In other performative news, you can see some of our cast and crew ALL OVER THE GAFF before and between the Ocean Race and The Show: In Fregoli’s The Sweet Shop, teched by our own Joe McEvoy, and in Galway Arts Festival, check out Frank Pig says Hello, with our wonderful actors Sam and Oisin Robbins, and the Macnas parade, including my audacious self and Mr. Emmet Byrne. I tell ya, Andrew and Noeline have, respectively, got it going on.

Check it out at, and also support our supporters! The Galway Fringe Festival can be found at six days to raise two grand! Not an easy feat, so give up yer aul sins, and put the price of a pint to the lovely arts, as you so kindly have before!

Enough spamming.

Holy knock it off, spam-man!

Anyway, off to fight the good fight against idleness and production deadlines!

See you in August,


And BY THE WAY. I’d just like to thank Fr. Garvey, Sylvia, Colm and Anthony from Ballinasloe, who donated to ThereisBear! a few days ago. Thanks for still believing beyond a deadline! 🙂


Grattitude: A dish best served on film.

Phase two.

So, after finally cuddlingly welcoming Enda Clarke into the cast to take on the role of Michael (yay), we began filming our Thank You video with the fabulous Ciara Moyna!

Thanks Paris, ‘preciate it.

I must say I’m really looking forward to seeing the final cut. The whole thing is a plethera of names and thanks from everyone involved. -Including me standing with men in kilts. What’s not to love? I’d love to say more, but it’s probably best to leave it until ye get to see it yourselves. I don’t want to talk it up, like everyone did Prometheus. HEYO. No, I didn’t see it.

Anyway, we also held a production meeting involving setting little tasks for the group. I’m very happy to be announcing that we will be looking for local singers, and a 3/5 year old girl to perform at their respective venues for the play. Operation ThereisLiftoff! begins. We’re inviting people to share legs of the tour by means of housing/travel -more for Cork. We did up our final budget today and lemme tell ya, what with the transaction fees from fundit, on top of six card declines, things are looking scary. But Acheiveable. We said we wanted the tour to work with a DIY ethos. So the closer to helping hands we are, the more we can invite to enjoy the celebrations and participate in making a good play happen.

I came up with the opening of the play the other day… It’s gonna be good, please God. It was great. Gave that rush of excitement for the first time in the run so far. However, it does mean that we need to go BIGGER and badder with some venues, like Ballinasloe and ‘Bofin, (as I will now lovingling call The Boff) though staying with the locality. -Not to mention having no accom in Inishbofin! -Ironic, considering we’re performing in a hotel, but these things happen. Tis a popular tourist spot, at a popular tourist time!  We’re now potentially going to be performing in TUAM during their theatre festival! Which is also very exciting!

In other news the venue of Smock Alley, The Boy’s School Theatre, is officially booked, signed and paid for. TO DUBLIN, TO DUBLIN! I’m so excited for that! I saw Oedipus, directed by David Scott there the weekend after the first time we put Burning on, and just thought, this is where our play needs to go!! So yeah, there and Ballinasloe, so far are my mileshtones. Cork’ll be really fun. Three nights in Patrick Galvin’s homeland!

We had good rehearsals today on top of which, in the wake of the GLORIOUS return of mister Oisin Robbins! JE LUI BIEN RECU, INDEED!! Roisin next, can’t wait! And hey-ho! The VOLVO OCEAN RACE!! Somewhere in that beautifully vague 2nd-6th of July, we’ll be staging snippets of the long awaited witch-scéal, not to mention all sprinkled with a dash of The Hero Returns!

In hilarious new news, the documentary is about to begin! So expect video updates of the production itself as well as me own musings! -Thank God, can’t be expecting ye to read this drivel til doomsday!

See you in August!

The long and dusty path, thus far!


Apologies for only starting up this thing now, but it has been a most hectic few days. Even as I write this, my laptop is askew over my budget list, programme prototype, an antler, my script, and Planet Word by Stephen Fry!

So what’s new in the world of Bear?

As most of you know, we’ve been fundraising to get our show The Last Burning on the road. We started up our campaign with an amazing pub quiz, hosted and attended by a lot of amazing people!

Sláinte to our FUNders

Howya, now? they says.

Then our descent into madness began. 140 funders later, we made €5,455…

I was as shocked as you!!

So what do you do with five and a half thousand euro worth of people believing and supporting you? I’ll tell ya what youdo. Thank ’em. Early and often. In the form of stuff, pats on the back, and an amazing play. I was at work when the congratulations texts came in from everyone saying that, apparently, ThereisBear! had made their target. And then some. I avoided the urge to bathe in 5000 euros’ worth of singles because needless to say, in Ireland, that would mean a bath of coins. Instead, we are making our thank you video. For which I’m so excited! Filming starts tomorrow, where we plan on writing the name of EVERY person who donated since our fundit campaign began, and all to a bangin’ tune that Ciara Moyna’s going to kill me for not yet having chosen.

Our press launch went down a treat too, including Dr. Patrick Lonergan from NUIG, his lovely speech, the first prototype of our poster revealed, a group of lovely actors getting to finally show their colours, and me arriving with said first poster 15 minutes late in a fabulous too-expensive-for-a-Monday-morning dress!

The Last Minute, by Hannah O’Reilly

So, prep for the launch was much tougher than anticipated, considering how cosy the event it turned out to be. The whole cast was still spread about the world (Oxford, Thailand, Malta, Canada and France) during the launch, what with it still being early days in the rehearsal process, so we had to select our scenes delicately. As in all things, it really became the tried and true theatre situation of minor details coming together in the final throws… I’m talkin 3am. ..It’s always in the wee hours that the creative juices start flowing. Darragh, Muireann and I polished their scene to cool and disturbing new places. Can you believe it?! New Places! I’ve been looking at this script for two feckin’ years and it just never stops to twist and change. So yes, on top of getting our proverbial shit together for the press launch, we also came to new and exciting conclusions and ploys to try over the next few weeks. Six to Midnight stuff, as Shaun handsomely put it. But the gang looked lovely, and performed well, and we got to say our thanks.

And didn’t we look smart?

So Hbear, what are we at now, altogether?
Lemme tell ya, one of the most difficult things to face in the face of this monster is how poor I am at getting simple things done quickly! I’m looking at the beautiful bones of our hand-painted programme, as we speak, wondering -though knowing the answer why- is isn’t a full body yet. Three minutes each page has taken so far, and I’m going at a rate of one a day tops! Ah, to have high hopes in oneself.

Dumbledore knew best.

Oh Hannah, haven’t you learned yet?

Even as I write this, I am in fact procrastinating further work for our Thank You video tomorrow …maybe the wee hours will prove a gracious mistress once again. Creative juices everywhere.

In even more exciting news, Samuel Ferry ( found the archives of The Lyric Theatre in our college library. This is where The Last Burning was first EVER put on! In these archives was the FIRST EVER POSTER OF THE PLAY, the programme, essays by the playwright Patrick Galvin, and most impressively, letters from the playwright to the head of the theatre. This included letters about my father’s production of The Last Burning twenty-three years ago. This is how I know the play exists. He talked about how the group was going to Monaco for the International Am-Dram festival there… Dad has the placard from when they won best play in ’89. I saw that thing almost every freakin’ day of my childhood and adolescence!! Ironically, I never knew what it was until a few months before deciding to actually do the play!  A massive nerdgasm was has by all!


Also, during a fabulous afters-function of the Mornington singers, I came up with the opening of the play. And YOU are in for a treat, my friends… oh my, you’re in for a treat.

Alas, the creative flow is upon us and the hour is 2.50 am. Time to switch off and thank everyone tomorrow!

See you in August,