Ain’t we in for a Corker!

So the Get-in has begun! And while I sit in the techbox, watching Joe and Ciara light up our show, I wait. I play the waiting game. For what? I can’t say.

No, I can.  A quick blog post before hitting up Kerry to sort out prop storage and bus transport!

So we all piled into the bus and car at 3pm yesterday afternoon, after a great run in Galway, warmly played to friends and strangers alike! Including several French people and the son and daughter of Patrick Galvin himself, the latter of whom is bringing a big crowed with her to our Cork show tonight. What a cool run of a show Galway was. Including a performance on Oisin Robbins’ birthday, during which, he snook an angry cry of celebration into the mob scene unbeknownst to the onlookers! This birthday also included a cake on the following night! Where we surprised Oisin with a cake onstage in the middle of a scene. Ah, to fuck with and keep actors on their toes. A special gift I give to them indeed. 🙂 Looking forward to Patrick Galvin’s birthday in Ballinasloe, cupcakes for all who attend!! Marred only by an early morning in Dublin the following day! Oh well! As is the nature of a tour. Sleeping in transit, that’s what it is!

So we had a lovely lark in Supermacs after our last Galway show, our get-out leaving us only to locked doors of the lovely Galway Arms. -A blessing in disguise for the actors I’d say. Everyone was knackered.

Thus began the trip to Cork! The entire trip dotted with me exclaiming everything was a moose, and the gang on the bus trying to decide when and where we can hold our ceremonial, end-of-the-Southern-Leg-of-the-tour burning of Muireann.

I’m now currently waiting for the cast and crew to get back from a lunch break. I cleverly timed my breaks to when they are gone, ensuring that I am at work when they leave and  return… thus looking as though I am an unstoppable machine. It’s good to build terror in the hearts of your co-workers. So I’ll leap back to my notes of entrances and exits and transitions before they get back, feign a meek yawn, or a sigh when asked to press a button to assist the technicians and carry on, tirelessly, to their wonder and awe… I am a genius. A non-productive genius.

Anyway, lemme tell ya this: Things go awry so fancifully!

Since arriving in Cork, several transport issues have bubbled! We got here about half an hour later than expected, meaning that once we got in, the Cork Arts Theatre was closed so we couldn’t store our set, costume and props at the venue. Meaning only one thing, LUGGAGE OVERLOAD for all involved. Each person had to take on a piece or set, or prop or costume, and bring it to the domicile of those with whom they stayed.

Thanks to the lovely Jamie Hooper, and Laura Hicks and her family, everyone was housed, and now so was every THING.

The production team stayed at Jamie’s in the city, for an early get-in and deliciously-hilarious-breakfast-banter-in-the-early-morning-rain, along with all of the set. Bags and bags of soil, rakes of rakes, and kilos of material, while Laura, in her car, took every single costume and prop. This of course was much too heavy causing ThereisBear!’s first fault of car breakdown. Her car is now in the garage and the entire cast, half an hour away from the city by car, must now bus it in from her house, courtesy of her fantastic family.

Please God, no one will be too furious and these stupid slip-ups. Hence, meticulous attention to where props and shit go from now on and not to assume anything at the risk of abiding by the ‘make an ass out of you and me’ law.

Needless to say transport became a bit of a mess, so. But I’m thinking hiring small buses to bring the gang to Laura’s from the city, and to store everything in the theatres, hell or high water. Thankfully it’s just transport and storage as opposed to several other things too! *touch wood.*

Phone calls to be made. Let us hope we’re greeted as warmly as we were in Galway to give a bit of a buzz!

Onward and Upward!


The first Burning

August 3rd.


….It’s late. Maybe midnight. The actors, after their long 14 hours were sent home to get their sleep for opening night. The night is still. Crisp. Quiet. And Rory Kitt lays his head down to rest. Bones aching. Mind pummelled. Body exhausted. A sigh, a yawn of relief. The lights go out, and Rory’s head hits the pillow after the tech run of The Last Burning, the story of Bridget Cleary’s murder by fire. The twin room goes to sleep…

But then. A loud sigh. A strange breath.

Rory sits bolt upright… It wasn’t him, anyway…
“Dad?” He calls. Maybe his father decided to stay in the other bed..? No response. He checks outside. Passers by maybe? But no sign. The room, the house, the street, empty. Nobody. Just Rory.

Heart pounding, he takes one final look around. Alone, but barely. He tucks himself tightly into his covers, to try and regain what sleep is left: It begins.

August 6th

Preview done, Opening night behind us… And the show has begun. Thankfully, we got more or less an open house for our first official show. Success. Standing ovation no less. Let’s hope it gets better and better.

We begin our final day in familiar territory today. Nuns Island has been very kind to us, as has Mark “Banger” Byrne, and all at the Galway Arts Centre. So supportive and helpful!

The past few days have been hectic, and each night ends at 3am, feeling as though I’ve been hit by a transit van made of chocolate. Exhausted, broken bodied, and happy. 🙂

We spent all Friday in our ten hour tech. The most painless tech I’ve ever experienced, thanks to Joe Mc Evoy and our fantastic team of talented and patient actors. Needless to say, in the true style of those that birthed the company, there have been last minute moments, choices and so on! Rehearsing the set changes twenty minutes before the show, just to be sure we all have it. Hilariously alive-keeping, no doubt.

I was honoured to have Grainne and MacDara Galvin, the daughter and son of the playwright, attend our preview, with stellar feedback! Thank God they enjoyed it! I loved chatting with them about their father, to know more about the man who gave us this powerful play. Learning that he himself was fairly creepy and into spooky stories and Irish Mythology. Sam’s would-be best friend, so, I’m sure! The show was greeted with warm applause and a full house in the Galway Arms to celebrate the begining of the longest run-up to a show for some of us thus far! It’s been a long, long road, difficult, yet rewarding. Fun, though challenging!

So Flynn and Quilty are killing the crowds every night. Watching Rory and Oisin, and then Sam and Oisin, is simply the funniest thing a director could ask for in this play. I end up in fits laughing in the tech box at their village gomery.

So where to next, Hanbox?! To the rolling hills of CORK!

That’s right! Off to Patrick Galvin’s homeland for our first out-of-home venue! Wednesday and Thursday, the 8th and 9th to bring The Last Burning HOME!

More to come now, apologies for the brief blog, but work she’s always crawlin forward!