IT’S NOW or never, your chance to catch the actor/ playwright perform three of his plays over three nights at Belltable: ‘Forgotten’ this Thursday 10; ‘Silent’ on Friday 11 and ‘Underneath’ on Saturday 12, 8pm. Under the banner of Fishamble’s Pat Kinevane Trilogy, these shows are travelling the country, playing back to back, directed by his long term collaborator, Jim Culleton.
Bear in mind that Fishamble’s proper title is ‘The New Play Company’. Developing theatre with writers based in Ireland has been its purpose for three decades.
Many plays have been enormously successful, touring to New York, Australia and mainland Europe. Limerick audiences saw the quality of work emerging through the platform of festivals, Lime Tree Theatre, Belltable and Theatre at the Savoy. A major incubus is the one-person ‘Show in a Bag’, out of which wriggled ‘Little Plastic Wars’ and Katie O’Kelly’s ‘Counter Culture’, showcased in the Savoy with several others.
Jim Culleton has been a remarkable mentor to emerging theatre makers, Kinevane included. Fishamable pioneered his first play ‘The Nun’s Wood’ 20 years ago and it was a hit. Kinevane’s charisma should see keen attendance to Thursday 10’s after-show talk with the actor and the director at Belltable for inspiration, after ‘Forgotten’. Market Dowling will chair.
Looking back on Fishamble’s inception in 1988, Culleton recalls that “we set up in college to do plays over the summer. The company has been going ever since, reading and developing and putting on new work. Certainly we’ve put on more than 100 plays in that time and this year we have eight productions on the road, touring around the country and some overseas.
“For this our 30th year we are working on ‘A Play for Ireland’, 30 new plays by 30 writers.” Belltable will be a venue and he lists local playwrights whom Fishamble has encouraged: Mike Finn, Joanne Ryan, Ann Blake, Michael Hilliard Murphy and Brendan Griffin, “writers working with us in developing new plays”.
The Belltable:Connect theatre makers’ support programme is managed by Marketa Dowling who, coincidentally or not, was a producer with Fishamble for years. Ann Blake and Joanne Ryan have gone on to produce award-winning shows through its auspices and there will be plenty more evidence of its success.
On to the Kinevane Trilogy. “We had all three shows in Los Angeles and Colin Farrell and Fionnula Flanagan came to see them.” His superlatives on Pat Kinevane’s ability on stage are matched by those ascribed to his writing: “Fierce, vibrant, joyful, devastating. People knew him as this actor who was daring and profound, who would take them on a dark journey that could also be provocative and joyful.”
Booking at venue manager www.limetreetheatre.ie for ‘Forgotten’, ‘Silent’, ‘Underneath’.