Tag Archives: Theatre


Following the amazing success of its inaugural lunchtime theatre presentation last summer, Barnstorm has another treat for Kilkenny audiences who will be spellbound by Tennessee William’s classic short play ‘Something Unspoken’ this June

“Williams’ masterpiece, which delves into the depth of forbidden love, is an emotional rollercoaster, and this Kilkenny production has been an absolute pleasure to develop” says Joanne Hennessy who directs. “We chose this piece in response to Pride Month in Kilkenny and we are looking forward to sharing the work with everyone.”

Two stalwarts of local theatre, Mags Whitely and Natasha Murray are set to present the new show in Barnstorm’s studio theatre in a lunchtime offering that should entertain and intrigue audiences. Both actors have a long history in the Kilkenny theatre community, having been part of the Barn Owl Players for many years. This lunchtime performance of ‘Something Unspoken’ will be no exception. Whitely and Murray have already earned the praises of their peers for their professional and committed approach to their craft.

Something Unspoken by Tennessee Williams, is set in Meridian, Louisiana in 1958. In the opening scene we find Cornelia Scott, a southern aristocrat, and her widowed secretary, Grace Lancaster. A new age is approaching the Southern aristocracy, and as a result, Cornelia is struggling to keep up with the changes and how to navigate them.

Grace has been Cornelia’s secretary and companion for 15 years, but lately their relationship has become ambiguous.

Cornelia wants to discuss the truth of their hidden emotions, but tensions build as Grace finds it difficult to express her feelings. She has been holding it all in for far too long, and now she is struggling to face the truth. Cornelia is determined to have an honest conversation with Grace, and to finally address the feelings that have been so carefully hidden away for over a decade.

This one-act play is the perfect way to take a break from the office and enjoy a light lunch while being entertained. The performance lasts only 45 minutes, so our office workers can easily fit it into their lunch break and be back in plenty of time.

Tickets are €17 and includes lunch which is presented by the Home Rule Club.; and can be booked HERE

Dates: Limited run from Mon 19th to Sat 24th June  at 1pm daily

Following last year’s successful run of XIV, Barnstorm’s Kilkenny Youth Theatre return to Ionad Dara, Goresbridge with their annual production. This year they bring their version of William Shakespeare’s classic Macbeth to the stage.

Macbeth tells the story of the tragic downfall of the warrior Macbeth, whose ambition causes him to abandon his morals and bring about the near destruction of the kingdom he seeks to rule.

The cast of Macbeth includes Matthew Hickey, Chris Power, Liam O’Neill, Anna Eustace, Diarmuid Maher, Eoin Cleary, Medha Trehan, Nell Snyder, Anna Purcell Duff, Ruby Woods, Matthew Downey, Lara Strauss, Jack Hoyne, Helen Doran, Katie Lawlor, Aoibhne Murphy, Aislin Konings Ferrari, Rionach Brady and Charlotte Lockwood Hutchinson.

Macbeth is running on Friday April 28th and Saturday April 29th at 8pm, with a matinee on Saturday at 3pm, in Ionad Dara, Goresbridge, R95 D654.

 

Tickets are €12.50 /€10 (Under 18’s) and can be booked online HERE

 

‘Barnstorm has been one of the best experiences of my life and I will forever treasure the laughs, the shows, the workshops and the incredible friends I made. The confidence and acceptance you gain from being part of this group is unparalleled’ Stephanie (member 2018 to date)

‘Coming out of lockdown and working with such a lovely, fun and talented group of people, getting to know them and work with them, has been amazing. Barnstorm is a place where we can all come and be ourselves, as loud and as mad as we want without being judged, and I am very grateful for it.’ Ruby, 16 (member 2019 – to date)

‘The Youth Theatre is one of my favourite organisations in Kilkenny. Through it I managed to make friends and enjoy myself immensely.’  Matthew (member 2016 to date)

‘’ …thank you so much for all your hard work and effort over the past two years and I can honestly say that those two years have benefited me tremendously….’  Eimear, 17

How do I join Barnstorm Youth Theatre?

Fill in your Expression of Interest BYT September 23 – May 24

Barnstorm Theatre Company has three youth theatre groups:

    Senior (SYT) for those at least 14+ yrs,

    Middle (MYT) for those in 1st and 2nd year

    Junior (JYT) for those in 5th and 6th class

Barnstorm Youth Theatre (BYT) runs from September to May/June and takes in new members each September.  The closing date each year for applications is the 31st of August.  Those interested can express their interest by using the link above.

Where groups are over-subscribed, open workshops are held during the first full week in September when the ways we work is demonstrated and an informal Question & Answer session about the youth theatre is held.

We to make room for everyone who is interested, this is not always possible due to resources and numbers.  If there needs to be a selection of new members, it is based on the gender, geographical and age breakdown of the current group and the applicant’s reason for joining, and their participation in the open workshop.

Senior Youth Theatre

Tuesday from 5.30 – 7.30pm.  The annual production takes place in the week following the Easter school holidays.  There is an additional time commitment expected for rehearsals, however consideration is given to other commitments e.g. exams, school etc.

Middle Youth Theatre

Wednesdays from 4.30 – 6.00pm.  The year comes to an end in May with a performance for family and friends.  There may be some extra tie commitment around the time of production which takes place on weekend in May.

Junior Youth Theatre

Thursdays from 4.00 – 5.30pm.  The year finishes in summer with a performance showcase for parents and friends, usually at a weekend in June.  There is no or minimal additional time commitment expected.

Cost

The annual membership fee is €250. This includes a registration fee of €70 to secure a place & the balance of €180 is due by December.  There is a discount of €25 per sibling and there are a limited number of scholarships available. Just ask Rosey rosey@barnstorm.ie

About Barnstorm Youth Theatre (BYT) in Kilkenny

Founded in 1991, BYT’s main aim is to produce theatre by young people for young people.  The youth theatre is child and young person centered and concentrates on drama and theatre skills.  There is no previous experience or a wish to have a career in theatre required.

The programme includes weekly workshops during the school year and one production a year.  

The workshops are facilitated by Rosey Hayes.  Rosey was member of a youth theatre, has trained and worked as a professional actor and director.

SYT:

Macbeth by William Shakespeare (2023)
XIV Fourteen by Droichead Youth Theatre (2022)
Alice in Wonderland adapted for stage by Anna Galligan (2019) – new production
There is Only Now by Anna Galligan, devised with SYT (2018)
A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare (2017)
The House of Oedipus by Anna Galligan (2016)
Alice in Wonderland adapted for stage by Anna Galligan (2015)
Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare (2014)
KoHL devised by Droichead Youth Theatre with Sharon Cromwell (2013)
Gormanghast by Mervyn Peake, adapted by John Constable (2012)
Paving Paradise by Richard Conlon (2011)
A Vampire Story by Moira Buffini (2010)
Burying Your Brother in the Pavement by Jack Thorne (2009)
The Exam by Andy Hamilton (2008)

MYT:
Us and Them by David Campton (2022)
(Note: MYT was formed in 2019 and due to the pandemic did not put on staged productions)

JYT:
Us and Them by David Campton (2022)
Scattered by James Butler (2019)
Don’t Shoot the Messenger by John Morton in collaboration with JYT (2018)
The Girl with The Golden Hair by Anna Galligan, devised with JYT (2017)
Trapped devised by Physically Phishy written by Geraldine O’ Neill (2016)
Grandad’s Diary devised by JYT with Anna Galligan (2015)
School Lockers three one acts designed and directed by JYT (2014)
In Quest of a Play devised by Physically Phishy written by Geraldine O’ Neill (2013)
Don’t Shoot the Messenger by John Morton in collaboration with the JYT (2012)
Beowulf devised by JYT, written by Anna Galligan (2011)
Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare – abridged (2010)
Mythika devised by JYT (2009)
The Dahl Project devised by JYT (2008)

Are you our next Participation and Education Officer?

Barnstorm Theatre Company is looking for a dynamic facilitator who is passionate about theatre and has strong administration skills to join its team as Participation and Education Officer. This position is responsible for supporting the artistic activities of Barnstorm, the Kilkenny Youth Theatre programming, development and connections with the theatre, young audiences, and education communities. 

To be successful in this role, candidates should be deeply curious about theatre practice and familiar with a range of creation processes. They should be knowledgeable of theatre practice in Ireland and have established relationships with the theatre and education sector. A candidate who is highly organised, has strong written and verbal communication skills, and works well with varying levels of supervision will thrive in this position.

Additional requirements for success:

  • A number of years’ experience in a professional theatre discipline.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Ability to stay motivated and organised under pressure.

Helpful skills and experience:

  • Knowledge of Youth & Education Sector
  • Post-secondary education in theatre practice or equivalent training/experience.

This is a permanent position for 35 hrs a week with an annual salary of €30,000. Hours can be adapted to suit the right person. There is a 6-month probation period.

We are anticipating a start date for the successful candidate in late August/early September 2022.

If you are interested in joining the BARNSTORM THEATRE team and feel you have the experience, qualities and skills to work for one of Kilkenny’s key arts organisations, please forward a cover letter that further speaks to why you would make an excellent fit for this opportunity, along with your CV and three references, by Friday 22nd July, 2022 to:

Anja Terpstra, General Manager – anja@barnstorm.ie

All offers of employment with Barnstorm Theatre Company require Garda Vetting.

 

Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1104‘I am not a child, I am nearly thirteen!’ – Alice

Barnstorm’s Kilkenny Youth Theatre presents Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.  Over the years there has been the love and death of Romeo and Juliet, the twisted Gormenghast and a theatrical take on film noir, KoHL,  Kilkenny Youth Theatre now look forward to taking one of the most loved childhood stories and adapting it for the stage.

Adapted for stage by Anna Galligan, KYT’s Alice is 12 and ½ years of age and it bothers her to still be thought of as a child.  Why do all these other people get to make the decisions, confuse her and boss her? After all, she is nearly thirteen.

Alice In Wonderland has a cast of 21 young people from all around Kilkenny county. The production’s costume and set design takes its influence from the steampunk genre, a suggestion from KYT members, where the design and look incorporates technology with 19th century industrial steam-powered machinery, which lended itself perfectly to the madness of Wonderland.

James Kennedy, who plays the Cheshire Cat, says that he enjoys working on Alice in Wonderland and that “it is a unique magical world that takes you away from reality”. James loves being part of Kilkenny Youth Theatre and “feels that the connection has grown so strong that it now feels like a family.”

Orla McGovern plays the Gryphon. She says that bringing something so well-known to life is very challenging and it is great as an actor to find new ways to present such familiar characters. She said the youth theatre “lets you learn lots of new skills in a fun and interesting way” and that things are taught so that it feels like “the skills and knowledge simply sweep in”.

Anna Galligan, Barnstorm’s Outreach Officer and director of the play, says “Alice in Wonderland has seen many adaptations, from Disney to Burton. We remained true to Lewis Carroll’s original books, especially Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass.  The main change is that Alice is now 12 and ½ years of age; as Humpty says ‘a most uncomfortable age’.  It is a time when we begin to leave childhood and enter our teenage years. Most of our group have recent experience of this, so we thought it would be interesting to do. There are also great opportunities to work as an ensemble, especially in the larger scenes of the Queen’s Garden and the Knave’s Trial. It is an insane story so it presented us with challenges as to how we could see what is theatrically possible.’

Update: Alice In Wonderland ran to full houses from Thursday 16th – Saturday 18th April at 7.30pm, with a matinée on 18th April at 3pm, at The Barn, Church Lane, Kilkenny (behind St. Canice’s Cathedral).  It saw some of our youngest audience members yet!

 

Photos: ross@rosscostiganphotography.ie

Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1038Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1076 Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1032Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1021

Phone: 353 86 7733391 Email: ross@rosscostiganphotography.ie

Barnstorm_AliceInWonderland_ForWeb-1007 Alice poster final

Steerpike and the twins Photo: Redbird Photography

Steerpike and the twins Photo: Redbird Photography

For their fifth production since restarting in 2008, Kilkenny Youth Theatre told the story  of Gormenghast.  This production was based on the legendary trilogy of books by Mervyn Peake and the stage adaptation was written by John Constable.

Amongst the dark and cold, granite walls of Gormenghast Castle an heir is born, Titus Groan, the 77th Earl of Groan.  The son of ineffectual father and a distant mother, who are bound by iron laws, dead rituals and traditions that have been obeyed for generations and must be obeyed by the generations to come.

As Titus Groan becomes a young man, he wants nothing more than to go beyond the Iron Gate into the free world and to leave behind the chains of ritual and rules that bind him.  He wants to be free.

In the depths of the crumbling castle, a kitchen boy sees himself as more than his ghastly beginnings.  He wants Gormenghast. At each given opportunity he raises himself up through the ranks of the castle and he will stop at nothing: coercion, seduction, murder.

In the half-lit corridors, we see how their lives entwine and their destinies collide, until the very existence of Gormenghast is shaken to its core.

This production was very well received and pushed the boundaries of design and performance for Kilkenny Youth Theatre.  It was chosen to show how the seemingly impossible was possible using theatre language  and form.

Gormenghast ran from 19th –  21st April at The Barn, featuring a cast of sixteen young people from Kilkenny city and county was directed by Anna Galligan.

Photos by Redbird Photography

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In 2007, after much demand from the public, Barnstorm decided to create opportunities for the adults in Kilkenny & the South East to explore the art of theatre from acting to stage management to design and more. The Adult Drama Club was initiated to be a place to socialise and learn about theatre, to go to shows and discuss the aspects of production afterwards in a fun yet critically positive environment. A second group was formed a few years later both groups are now the Barn Owl Players with a growing reputation for exciting and innovative theatre projects in Kilkenny.

In 2010 the first One-Act Theatre Festival was launched to tremendous success and to date the members of Barn Owl Players are constantly looking for new challenges in the development of theatre skills.

For further information contact 0567751266 or philip@barnstorm.ie

   

 

 

Love In Lockdown – Panic Stations 2022

 

Productions & Projects to date:

(2022) Love in Lockdown: LIVE (2 programmes May)

(2021) Love in Lockdown Part1 (March) + Part 2 (April)

(2020) Zoom BOP: CONFINEMENT (partnership with Barn Owl Players (12 monologues on Zoom and launched on YouTube)

(2017) Big Maggie by John B Keane

(2016) One-Act Festival 2016 – The Bear by Brian Friel & Tough Cookies by Edward Crosby Wells

(2015) Christmas Crackers

(2015) Blood, Bats & Barn Owls @ Rothe House

(2015) One-Act Festival 2015 – A Bedtime Story by Sean O’Casey, Confusions by Alan Ayckbourn & A Little Box Of Oblivion by Stephen Bean

(2015) What’s Love Got to Do with It? @ Hole in the Wall

(2014) Christmas Crackers

(2014) One-Act Festival: Theatre X 2

(2013) Mid-May Murders (BOP + KATS) Any Body for Tea? by G. B. Gilford & The Patient by Agatha Christie.

(2012) Re: Joyce @ The Hole In The Wall

(2012) Keane Writings @ The Hole In The Wall

(2012) Dancing at Lughnasa by Brian Friel

(2012) Cabaret Nights – Members direct each other in an evening of monologues, excerpts and poetry presented in The Barn in the unique setting of a club.

(2011) 2nd Annual One-Act Festival – Two plays The Dumb Waiter by Harold Pinter and The Donahue Sisters by Geraldine Aron directed, designed, stage managed and produced by the members.

(2011) Shorts 11 – The new Adult Theatre Club took to the stage in the tradition of previous members and produced four play excerpts in a full evening presentation in The Barn.

(2011) Love Is…  But like true troopers the BOP rose to another challenge and in a short time created a memorable evening of Love with poetry, song and drama, for romantics & cynics alike, that was presented in The Hole in the Wall on High Street.

(2010) Christmas Crackers – Pieces were chosen and cast, directors elected and rehearsals well under way when the great snow of 2010 hit! We had to postpone and then cancel this one when January arrived.

(2010) One-Act Festival – BOP produced the first festival which comprised of two programmes with five plays presented in The Barn over a week.

(2010) Anything…But Peig – The second group of adults had been developing theatre skills over the previous year and presented their version of Cabaret Nights with an Irish flavour in celebration of St Patrick’s Day.

(2009) Christmas Crackers – The company re-visited the Cabaret Nights module to present a festive fare that thrilled audiences on the run-up to Christmas. This time mulled wine and mince pies added to the enjoyment of short performances, poems and songs to celebrate the season in The Barn.

(2009) Halloween Tales – Members of the Barn Owl Players created a show for children that involved Celtic Folklore and Legend based on Halloween and the horror tale. Children (and parents) were encouraged to bring along a duvet, blanket or pillow for this treat that was presented in The Barn on 31st Oct.

(2009) Cabaret Nights @ The Barn – Members directed each other in monologues that were presented in a ‘cabaret-style’ in The Barn – audiences were seated at individual tables surrounded by paintings and glitz, and, while performances took place on stages at either end of the room, were fed wine and titbits. (to back page)

(2009) Shorts 09 – Another series of short plays directed by Barnstorm staff and presented by the new ADC in The Barn

(2008) The Whiteheaded Boy – A full-length 3-act play by Lennox Robinson presented in the Watergate Theatre

(2008) Shorts 08 – A series of short plays directed by Barnstorm staff and presented in The Barn