February 2018 will see Barnstorm’s newest creation for age 7+ and their families at the Watergate Theatre. Barney Carey Gets His Wings was written especially for our local theatre company by leading playwright for young audiences, Brendan Murray.

The play happens in the garage at the home of Barney Carey [aged 7 ½] and his Dad [aged 37 ½]. What might have been an ordinary Saturday afternoon becomes extraordinary as obedience to the rules of living, and the conventions of good behaviour give way to desire, freedom and self-realisation. 

In our Meet the Cast articles over the coming weeks you will get to read about those involved in this unique production. First up is Adam Dougal, who plays the part of young Barney Carey.

Adam recently played the title role in The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾, which is based on Sue Townsend’s best-selling novel:

Photo by Aaron McCracken


Where are you from, Adam? I was born in Belfast and I work between my hometown and London.

Have you performed in Kilkenny before? No, but I can’t wait!  I will be living in the city for a month and there’s nothing more exciting than discovering a new place; I also think a month is a good amount of time to really get to know somewhere.

Was your English teacher inspiring? Unfortunately, my English Teacher was a very grumpy man but I did have other inspiring teachers in Music and Drama who introduced me to a world of performing and the magic of theatre.

Did you attend the theatre while in primary school? No, I was part of the choir and performed in most of our concerts so, it wasn’t until secondary school that I really started to get into drama.  I had my first professional job at The Lyric Theatre, Belfast when I was thirteen years old.

Tell us about your character in Barney Carey Gets His Wings. Barney is an intelligent and inquisitive young boy who is obsessed with flying! He is at the age when he is trying to make sense of the world around him and he finds adults very confusing at times.

What sort of person is going to love the play? Everyone – that’s the beauty of the story; it’s universal and it applies to young and old.

What will the audience be thinking about as they head home after the play? The adults will realise the responsibility they have in shaping our children’s view of the world, and will be thinking about the importance of treating everyone equally. The children will be inspired to follow their dreams and not be afraid of being unique.

Whats going to surprise people about Barney Carey Gets His Wings? How much affect that it will have on them; it will challenge their perceptions of people and the world around us.

Who will have the best costume? I’m hoping my wings will be pretty spectacular, but I think the bearded lady’s will be the best!

Whats challenging about bringing this script to life? I guess it’s getting across the overall message of what the play is telling us; there’s a moral lesson in there and I will have that in my mind’s eye as I work through the rehearsal process.

Why did you want to be involved in this production? I cried when I read the script – I have no shame in admitting that it had a huge effect on me. I connected with the importance of the story and the message it is trying to get across. I have a young niece and nephew and this is the kind of production I want them to see – a piece of theatre that will teach them how to approach life as they grow up but also how to be a kind person.

If you could choose ANY character to play, what would your dream role be on stage/film? Sometimes you don’t realise your dream role until you’re doing it.  Acting in Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4 was a dream role, an incredible character with a really unique view of the world.  It has to be one of my favourite parts of my career so far. I can’t wait to get started on Barney Carey Gets His Wings and to meet the rest of the Barnstorm team.  Kilkenny here we come!

School performances are on Wednesday 21st to Friday 23rd with a family show on Saturday 24th at 2:30pm. Get your tickets from the Watergate Theatre (056 7761674) or online at www.watergatetheatre.com and next month you can join Barney, his dad, and the lady with the beard, as they spread their wings in this comic tale of forgotten memories and future possibilities.