Archive for April, 2007

Dublin Theatre Festival

25th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

RTÉ notes that the preliminary programme for the 50th Dublin Theatre Festival (27 September – 14 October) has been announced.

The full, expanded programme for the festival will be announced later this year, but among the highlights are the Irish premiere of Marina Carr’s ‘Woman and Scarecrow’ at the Peacock Theatre; Druid Theatre Company’s production of ‘A Long Day’s Journey into Night’ at the Gaiety Theatre; Laurie Anderson’s ‘Homeland’ at the Olympia Theatre and Japan’s premier Butoh dance company’s ‘Sanki Juku’ at the Gaiety Theatre.

Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, John O’Donoghue, has granted once-off funding of €200,000 for the anniversary year, and a 50th Celebration Committee had been established to work with the Dublin Theatre Festival.

Why Experiment?

24th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

Charles McNulty at the LA Times considers the trends in awards for American drama, and the Pultizer Prize in particular, and wonders if cutting-edge playwriting has a chance to succeed if it is not rewarded by critical attention, or honoured for its achievements.

Audio Drama Popular Again

24th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

Toby Lichtig at the Guardian blog has an interesting article, chock-full of links, about how the rise in popularity of podcasting might revitalise the art of audio drama.

Frederick Greenhalgh of Radio Drama Revival! thinks so. His blog, which began at the end of last year, includes a range of new radio dramas. He is based in the US, where audio theatre, he admits, is still an especially “small world” desperately in need of promotion; but he is convinced that things are changing. Greenhalgh runs Final Rune Productions and is dedicated to making this happen. He reminds us that that Orson Welles started in radio, and laments the current paucity of commercial radio drama in the US:

The popularity of programmes such as Sonic Theater on XM Radio and sites such as Dramapod also indicate a resurgence, though a quick look at the latter’s main categories – Superhero, Dr Who, Star Trek – points to Greenhalgh’s fears. He is enthusiastic about the more illustrious recent history of radio drama in the UK: “They actually think it’s valuable to have written stories recorded and played on the radio for people. What’s crazier, is that they PAY people to do it!”

Radio broadcasters in Ireland would do well to consider how they could use this revived interest in audio theatre to bring new drama to the Irish public.

Sundance Director at Guth Gafa

24th April 2007 by Maura McHugh

IFTN reports that the Guth Gafa Documentary Film Festival (10 – 13 May 2007) in Donegal has announced that Geoff Gilmore, Director of the Sundance Film Festival, will be a special guest.

Gilmore, who has been director of Sundance for 10 years, has helped establish the Sundance Film Festival as the most important event in the US independent filmmakers calendar. At Guth Gafa 2007 Gilmore will host an industry seminar focusing on Creative Theatrical Documentaries on Saturday 12th May. This event is supported by the Irish Film Board.

Gough Wins Best Short

23rd April 2007 by Maura McHugh

RTÉ reports that Irish author, songwriter, and playwright, Julian Gough, has won the prestigious Britain’s National Short Story Prize, and a sum of €22,000.

Gough’s winning short story, ‘The Orphan and the Mob’, was broadcast by BBC 4 radio last week, and if you hurry you can still listen to it (click on the Tuesday reading; the story is read by Irish actor Conor Lovett).

Gough’s new novel, Jude: Level 1, which continues the adventures of the hero of ‘The Orphan and the Mob’, will be published in July.