BY SEÁN P. FEENY
THIRTY years after first arriving in Dublin as a young ‘punk’ from Donegal, popular artist Little John Nee returns to the nation’s capitol for the ABSOLUT Fringe festival.
In August 1982 Letterkenny native Little John arrived in Dublin after spending five years in London and began performing on the city’s famous landmark pedestrian areas, Henry Street and Grafton Street.
From performing as Charlie Chaplin, doing Cabaret in the Project with Grapevine Arts Centre, Little John the ventured west to Galway where he joined the newly-founded Macnas.
“I then began creating children’s theatre for the Galway Arts Festival and writing shows that have brought me to audiences all over this island, the United States and to sell out shows and standing ovations in the legendary Citizens Theatre in Glasgow where I saw panto as a child.
“From adventures in the streets of Cadiz and adventures in Shepperton Studios, love, loss, laughing and crying, making more mistakes than it is feasible to survive; it’s all been a series of adventures that have brought me to where I am today, living for the most part a fulfilled life, privileged to be doing the work I love,” he said.
Next month the adventure comes full circle as Little John returns to Dublin to perform in the ABSOLUT Fringe for a week with his show Sparkplug at the Lir Academy.
In his brand new one man show, Sparkplug, Little John brings back his highly entertaining showman, songster and storymaker, Sparkplug Callaghan.
A new commission for this year’s Earagail Arts Festival, Sparkplug is a comic rock’n’roll odyssey and for Little John Nee, the culmination of a lifetime in comic storytelling and musical performance.
Sparkplug washes his face in fresh rainwater every day – is this the secret to his devilish good looks? Recently returned to the rural townland of Tullyglen, Sparkplug now lives in his Uncle George’s barn; beaten and bruised by the unrelenting forces of recessionary misery he struggles to keep the van on the twisted road… and to keep her lit.
Of course a show like this is only ‘half a thing’ without an audience so be sure to encourage all your friends and family to go and see one of our best stage artists when he plays at the ABSOLUT Fringe from September 10 to 15 at the Lir Academy. For more information and bookings log onto www.fringefest.com or call the box office on 1850 374643