Baby Soviets breaking British militarism

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Five shillings minted

THE Limerick General Strike of April 1919 against British militarism is one of the most important events of the War of Independence. Following the tragic death of a Republican hunger striker and the imposition of martial law on the city, trade unionists and local Republicans combined to organise what became known worldwide as ‘The Limerick Soviet’.

They ran the city for two weeks, fed the population, printed currency and published a daily newspaper. Eventually, the military restrictions were lifted and work was resumed in two phases.

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Interestingly, The Limerick Soviet was one of several throughout Europe in those trying times of World War 1, when nations were being smashed and boundaries redrawn in bloodshed.

Transition Year students of Gaelcholáiste Luimnigh are set to bring this important history to the stage in a musical play, ‘Baby Soviets’. It is set in Limerick City, April 1919, with the events of the Soviet pushing the story on.

It focuses on three fictional characters: Peggy Ryan, Christy Collins and British soldier James McAllister. The arrival of a fourth, American journalist Martha Browne, adds a wider dimension to the tale.

‘Baby Soviets’ is running for two nights and with a different cast each night.

Written and directed by drama teacher, playwright and singer Ógie Ó Céilleachair, the show premieres in Millennium Theatre LIT, Moylish tonight Thursday March 8 and Friday 9 at 8pm.

Tickets at www.litmt.ie and you can follow on Twitter @gcldrama Facebook Drama GCL or Snapchat babysoviets.