This year the all Ireland Drama Festival was held in Kilmuckridge Memorial hall in the village of Kilmuckridge. As part of the fringe line up during the week Coláiste an Átha and a number of other schools in the county performed a play. Coláiste an Átha performed “Johnny Baluba: Teen Detective”.
The students involved had rehearsals twice a week, one after school and one during school hours, and even a painful three and a half hours worth of a rehearsals during the Easter break with an outcome of only one successful run through to come from it. Each of these rehearsals were led and managed by Michelle Burton and Eddie O’Brien. Michelle Burton also directed the students’ performance of the play.
We took time to prepare for the stage with all different attitudes and personalities between all the cast members and the stage crew. It took some time for everybody to adjust to the one level, mind set and the out and out performance of the actual play. When it came to the stage for the final piecing it was quite successful with scene changes, props and even our own sound engineer who was also a student from Coláiste an Átha. Each prop and set piece were specially made for the play by the students in the crew and Eddie O’Brien and had to be able to fit on the specially made stage for the event.
I know everyone in the cast and crew had their ups and downs in preparation for performing the play and becoming increasingly more nervous during the few weeks prior to the day we all headed for Sean Og’s and the stage, but since there had been a lot of practice and with everyone being able to support and help each other through it. The performance was a complete success in the eyes and hearts of the cast crew and directors.
The play was led by the two front men Shane Murphy and Brendan Manning. They had a massive impact on the rest of the cast and crew members as the two guys can take any situation and find a way to make it light hearted on and off the stage. During all of the commotion Coláiste an Átha had managed to reel in an award for best actor along with a two best actor nominations, and adjudicator’s award for memorable scene and placing second in the overall competition.
I thinks it’s safe to say that the students would like to give a massive thank you Michelle and Eddie because with out them the play would never had happened and that they are all excited to see what is in store for their performance again next year for the festival.