By John O’Donnell
The Letterkenny One Act Drama Festival returns to An Grianán Theatre on Friday, November 3 promising a weekend of top-quality entertainment and drama in what has become a firm favourite in the town’s theatre calendar.
The programme for the festival has just been announced and once again the line-up contains a stellar selection of top-quality plays from all over the country.
Main pic: Gunpowder Productions from Ballincollig Co. Cork who presented Dancing at Lunacy at the drama festival in 2019.
The festival will host nine plays over the weekend with three plays on opening nightm (Friday, November 3) three more on the Saturday night and the final three on Sunday afternoon.
Corn Mill Theatre Group from Carrigallen, Co. Leitrim, a group with a fine competition history (23 appearances at the All Ireland Open finals in Athlone) open proceedings on Friday with Clarity at Last by Charlie McGuinness.
Cloonacool Players from Co. Sligo will perform a play that won the All Ireland One Act Final in Letterkenny in 2018. The Quiet Land by Malachy McKenna is a wonderful story of two lonely rural farmers and their realisation that their old way of life is gone forever.
Finally on Friday evening we have Carlow Little Theatre Society making their first appearance at the Letterkenny festival with Heilgenstadt by Mark Kradock, a delightful period piece which dramatizes the life of Beethoven in his early thirties and his encroaching health issues.
Gunpowder Productions from Ballincollig, Co. Cork get things going on Saturday with their production of Bomshell by well known Irish journalist Fiona Looney which chronicles the visit of Jane Mansfield to Tralee in 1967.
Gunpowder are regulars at the festival having been with us since the very first event in 2014 and they always bring something special.
Rosemary Drama Group will also be familiar to Letterkenny festival audiences and join us once again with The Visitor by Dean Laccphee.
Saturday’s line up is complete with Cork’s Carraig na Bhear theatre group performing In the Blink of an Eye written and directed by the group’s own Michael Manly.
The final trio on Sunday afternoon begin at the earlier time of 4pm. Theatre 3 from Newtown Abbey in Co. Antrim come with a fascinating play – ‘Even Numbers’ – about a woman who has murdered five people by poisoning.
The Oakhill players from Co. Clare perform The Chip Van Plays by Robert Iles.
It’s a poignant comedy set on a park bench outside a cemetery where two strangers meet. Bunclody/Kilmyshal Drama Group from Co. Wexford bring proceedings to a close with Dead Man’s Bells by Meadbh de Brun.
The strength of the Letterkenny festival is reflected in the number of groups who return to the town each year all high in their praise of the welcome and facilities at An Grianán and the town itself.
The festival promises to be a fun filled weekend of top-quality productions.