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LATEST NEWS

Carrie as presented by Trinity Musical Theatre

CARRIE THE MUSICAL, TRINITY MUSICAL THEATRE SOCIETY O’REILLY THEATRE, DENMARK STREET, ROTUNDA DUBLIN 1. 14th February – 17th February...

CARRIE THE MUSICAL, TRINITY MUSICAL THEATRE SOCIETY O’REILLY THEATRE, DENMARK STREET, ROTUNDA DUBLIN 1. 14th February – 17th February 2024 Adjudication Performance  16th February 2024 First staged in 1988, the musical adaptation of Stephen King’s cult classic has mesmerised audiences for over 35 years. Heartfelt and horrifying in equal measure, Carrie has something for everyone, brought to life with music from Academy Award-winning Michael Gore – (Fame). Tragedy, romance, and family tensions intertwine in this truly horrifying coming of age story. This story takes place in Chamberlain, Maine. Appearances though are often deceiving, and drab exteriors can obscure a more gruesome reality. Not least in the case of Carrie White, a social outcast with perplexing hidden powers.  Trinity Programme Synopsis . This show was completely sold out as I arrived at the majestic O’Reilly Theatre in the heart of Dublin city on the evening of 16th February. A Fantastic front of house team and they all ensured that this queue flew in through the doors and into their seats in no time at all. Personally I was greeted by Connie Angela McGowan, PRO of this Society and the Front of House Team. Trinity Musical Theatre was founded in 2016 and this is their 7th Production. I had the best seats in the house my view was superb. The stage is vast in width, and before the curtain even rose, black and red lighting all around surrounded us, which immediately created a feeling of foreboding and darkness. Brilliant. The scene was set, I had the most wonderful seat with my zero coke and my programme (thank you!) I sat back and waiting for what I was very soon to realise, a superb performance. The Director was Ms Makena Margolin. This Director created a wonderful superbly directed vision, in every single moment of this show. The movement of each individual character was so very different in personality and with Ms Margolin’s direction I was immediately drawn into the town of Maine. From the moment the curtain opened, I was no longer in my seat in the Theatre- I was in Maine and there I stayed for the rest of the evening such was the finesse and staging of this masterpiece. Ms Margolin’s attention to detail was everywhere in this production. The book scene in the library- where Carrie discovers she has the superhuman force, when she looks at the books and wherever she went with her eyes and her stare the books started flying off the various bookshelves to the ground. Having seen this backstage after the show, this was so cleverly done, and this scene most definitely had the WOW factor. The sets were very simple and yet clever. However, the personalities you created in this story Ms Margolin were raw and spellbinding – throughout this show. I simply loved how your Direction brought this story to life helped by a wall of very talented cast and company. You are a very young and already very experienced Director and I do believe I will see your name in lights time and time again in future years. As a director you have a gift that is very special and rare, and I simply loved what you created in this performance with your talent. You brought out the best in everyone and everything and that in turn created a world where you brought your audience with you into that world, and we never left. A joy. Bravo. Choreographer was Ms Grace Skowronski. Opening number was stunning and really set the tone for the rest of the show. The choreography was super throughout. Ms Skowronski you also had the added blessing of having the largest number of males in a show I have seen in my life all who could dance and sing and act! Such a rarity – (the numbers of men!!) Full of life, energy, emotion, and fantastic ensemble dancing made the choreography in this show simply incredible. “Prom Arrival” bounced off the stage with good vibes & fun. It was electric, the dance moves here were many, but for me this was indeed a highlight of your show. It brought so much life to the stage in this show and to each character and their individual performances and characters themselves. It was always captivating. And only added to the very emotional theatrical experience that was before my eyes from the first note to the last note of this show. BRAVO Ms Skowronski. Absolutely superb. The Orchestra sat before me a band of 8 with Musical Director Erica O’Reilly at the helm. The instrumental before the curtains opened set the scene for what the music would bring to this production. Accompaniment was never too loud for the cast and only enhanced the talent on stage. There was a lovely empathy for the Company in this Orchestra, soft, loud, fun, dramatic and an Orchestral extravaganza from start to finish in total sync as a team and as an accompaniment to your Cast on stage. “Evening Prayers”, “Once You See”, “Prom Arrival” and “The Destruction” were a tour de force. Erica O’Reilly Musical Director / Conductor and Keyboard 1, John Duffy Keyboard 2, Colum Corken Guitar 1, Jasper Nolan Guitar 2, Isabella Littler, Cello, Reana Supple, Bass, Daniel Penrose, Bass and Tom De Paor Drums. Wonderful strong, gifted team with great musicality throughout never once upstaging the performers or being too loud too soft. Fine vocal work for the principals and chorus was due I’m sure to hours and hours of rehearsal. All performers knew their music impeccably and the confidence in their MD was obvious to see. Well done Ms O’Reilly and your wonderful team. Stage Manager was Ella Clarke. Brady Dunne was Set Designer. Sets were deceptively simple. When the show began, it did occur to me that sets were “minimalistic”. Added sporadically throughout there were many set pieces such as “the room under the stairs” where Carries mother locked her in for hours on end, the chairs in the classroom arrived and were removed very eloquently during Sue Snell’s solo with effective but simple choreography. Transitions were smooth and flawless using the ensemble cast to move things around whilst they were singing. Different sets such as Carries home, school, prom evening stage, created a visually striking backdrop and although very simple they were very effective and worked extremely well for the Cast and Crew. The bucket of blood which was poured on Carries head when she was crowned prom queen was so detailed and indeed messy! Well done Ms Clarke and Mr Dunne. A good team. Sound. Sound Designer was Barbara D’Orsi, and Sound Operator was Vinny Osbourne. And sound was excellent. From the first note of the show I loved the tone and volume used and the balance between the performers and Orchestra was so good it was if they were as one. Radio Mics worked extremely well and there were many, but this show bounced off the stage in quality of vocals and had for me personally a huge part to play in the overall success of this performance. It was simply Super. Lighting Operator was Thomas Fitzgerald. I loved the lighting in this show so many foreboding colours especially in the gory scenes where Carrie kills everyone and the bucket of blood falls on her from the prom stage. Very effective and very chilling indeed! As was the opening scene which I wish to mention where Sue Snell is sitting on a chair downstage centre covered in blood and the lighting here was so effective, so scary and so ominous. The lighting in this show is crucial as it sets the mood of the scene, from the dark dismal house of Carrie to the school prom to the fantastic lighting in the massacre at the prom. The contrast created here between the varying scenes was very well-done Mr Fitzgerald. Lighting overall was a huge success in this show and was another key to its success and to the overall story, where many emotions and pictures are involved to create Carrie the Musical in such a beautiful and as I say sometimes in a bloodcurdling gory way. The contrasts and the effects of your successful lighting were magnificent and really did make a huge difference to the overall show and its success. Well done. Costume Designer was Pearse Crowley. What a talent this young man possesses. Mr Crowley created Costumes which were simple and effective and superb. I mention here the opening scene with Sue Snell covered in blood, Carries Prom dress after she had murdered everyone including her mother with her powers, the blood on the dress was such a visual. The pink prom dress also destroyed in blood and the torn material was very good and very effective and in complete contrast to Carries attire in the opening scenes with her pleated skirt and cardigan and drab colours. The blue jeans and white shirts for the men and the red shorts and white shirts for the ladies worked very well and showed again the contrast from the normal day life to the darker side of the show and of Carrie. Makeup as appropriate and Props were very good. The bucket of blood for the prom, the knife, the loaf of bread, were such small things but made a huge difference to the story bringing it to life. Make up overall was very good. All the above brought the characters to life, chilling, scary, realistic, normal, a world of adjectives could use to convey through costume the world in which Carrie lived in. Congratulations to all. Carrie White as played by Aoife McCormack. The heart of the show with a bigger heart in life. A flawed, shy, scared, sensitive teenager bullied incessantly by her classmates hiding away in the shadows living in a dark despairing house with her mother who locked her under the stairs regularly to repent her sins. I could feel the power in this young lady’s performance both in acting and in singing from my seat in the auditorium. Ms McCormack, I loved the emotional rollercoaster you brought us on your journey. You have a glorious voice, and a great stage presence, and you are a wonderful actor. You have a beautiful tone throughout your vocal register mentioning showstoppers such as “Carrie”, “And Eve was weak”, “Unsuspecting Hearts” and “Stay here instead”. The power of your voice and your character in the “Destruction Scene” really showcased Carries pent up anger and emotion as you unleashed your telekinetic powers on the world. A magnificent role you played here Ms McCormack. You were terrific. The part of Margaret White (Carrie’s Mother) was played by Lily-Kate Hearns. Who is also Chairperson of this Society. What a voice. The strength of your vocal, your emotionless cold exterior, your religious fanatical way of living, and your white deathlike make up, your dark home, the closet under stairs where you threw your daughter Carrie in frequently and left her there for hours showed a cold hearted, dark, evil, and abusive character with controlling behaviour a religious fanatic. Your character you created was so well done that that every time you came on stage, when you were quietly sewing, I was waiting for an explosion of rage, anger, and or violence, such was the intensity of the persona created by you in Margaret White. You were indeed a very compelling figure Ms Hearns. I loved your voice Ms Hearns. You played the part of Margaret White here so wonderfully well. A key role in the overall success of this production. Congratulations Ms Hearns. Sue Snell was played by Hannah McNicholas Roche. You opened the show sitting on stage alone covered in blood with singing that put the hairs standing on the back of my neck immediately. A beautiful character you were Ms McNicholas Roche. Gorgeous voice, clear and concise and lyrical with a gem of a personality, who stood up to the bullies for Carrie and became her friend. “Once You See”. A friend that any person would be glad to have indeed. Your relationship with Tommy Ross, portrayed a love beyond your years, that would last forever – You are a natural on-stage Ms McNicholas Roche gifted with a talent that this show brought out the best in you in this character and I simply loved Sue Snell throughout. So very well done. Juliet Hill played the part of Chris Hargensen. The innocent looking bad girl and bully to Carrie, making fun of her, setting up her fall and the inevitable aftereffects of your damage and horrible behaviour setting her up to win Prom Queen and then dropping the bucket of blood on top of her head destroying her dress hair makeup and her life really in front of everyone at the Prom was as horrible as it sounds. Truly. And it was your talent and your acting skills along with a fine vocal performance that I highlight here in this role you played. Great role, and you made it your own. Tommy Ross was played by Will Robbins. What a dote. Tommy exuded the perfect boyfriend to Sue Snell, who with Sues encouragement offered to be Carrie’s prom date so that Carrie would not have to go on her own was Sues way of apologising to Carrie for bullying her in school along with her other classmates. By asking Tommy to take Carrie to the Prom to make up for her vile behaviour was the catalyst in losing Tommy forever. Lovely stage presence, costumes, beautiful lyrical sweet singing voice, great acting and perfectly cast in this role. A part beautifully played Mr Ross. Well done. Colm Lombard played the part of Billy Nolan, Chris Hogenson’s boyfriend. Very easily manipulated by Chris. Great role. Mr Lombard did everything he was told, like a little lap dog following his master around – this stage duo really worked well. Good stage presence where you came into your own setting up the destruction of Carrie with Chris in the fatal prom scene. Your stage presence was very good and overall a very strong Billy. Well done. Mrs Gardener was played by Beth Strahan. And Mr Stephens was played by Stephen Hayden. Two professors in the Chamberlain High School. Ms Strahan a lovely character, saw through the horrific bullying of Carrie and set the bar high when she made each of them apologise in turn for bullying Carrie. A teacher with a sympathetic ear and a soft spot for Carrie, lovely vocal, lovely stage presence and appearance and you really came into your own in the gorgeous scene with Carrie at the prom when you were seated down stage left quietly in the corner chatting. You had her back Ms Gardener. And you were a wonderful character. Singing, dancing, and acting you had it all. Great role superbly played. Well done. Mr Stephens work colleague to Ms Gardener was a lovely contrast to his fellow teacher. A bit eccentric and mostly not aware of what was going on and struggled in his role as bringing out the best in his students. unless Ms Gardener informed him. Great costumes, lovely clear speaking voice, and good stage presence. Well played Mr Hayden. A strong role indeed. The role of Norma was played by Eva O’Sullivan. Swayed by Chris’s interactions with Carrie and her bully she follows Chris’ lead throughout the show. Part of the bullying crowd that taunted Carrie- her role added to the overall cruelty that led to the tragedy that unfolded at prom night. Strong clear diction and very good stage presence. The part of Freddie was played by Luke Reid, lovely role, strong diction, and character well played. A friend of Tommy Ross and had a nice relationship with Carrie in this role. Other roles most worthy of mention Eva O’Sullivan as Norma, Jane Roe as Frieda, Emer Hearns as Helen, Nathan Young as George, Luke Reid as Freddy, David Cosgrave as Stokes along with an extremely talented ensemble really were exceptionally good in enhancing this performance through their various talents on stage. Well done to you all. Vocal Technician was Mr Hayden Kline. Superb work done by this gentleman on every aspect of vocals in the show. Mr Klines tuition was everywhere throughout ensuring balance and ease for each vocalist and chorus member throughout the show. Well done. Finally to the Chorus. What can I say? What a sound you made. I was / am in awe of you all and that of Mr Cline’s ability to bring you as a group to the level your arrived at for this show. You bounced, danced, and sang your way around this Theatre and back. What a vocal. What an amazing quality and the envy of many societies – so many MEN!!!!! This Chorus was special. You felt every move, every word, and were as one. A unit. A wonderful wall of sound in every single number throughout the show. I looked forward every single moment to your arrivals on stage where the sound of your voices literally lifter the roof of the O’Reilly Theatre and brought the house down with applause sometimes even in the middle of songs! Absolutely glorious Chorus, every single number was Grade A, and I simply loved the chorus in its tone, sound, volume, emotions, life, and its simple happiness which hit the walls of the auditorium consistently in every number without fail. BRAVO. A Wonderful Society, with great talent and a fabulous choice of show for this young cast. And remember………… An eagle’s just another bird, until he can spread his wings, 
 A river is just a sheet of ice, till Winter turns to Spring, 
 And though the clouds may block the sun, it doesn’t mean it left the sky, 
 Just when you think you’ve seen it all, there’s more than meets the eye. 
 Like things I dream, and things I feel, there’s more to me than I reveal, 
 And ‘cause I shine in quiet ways, someone you don’t recognise, 
 I’m a diamond in the rough, a dreamer in disguise. 
 An eagle is just another bird until he can spread his wings……………………. 
 
 (A Dreamer in Disguise” 
 Carrie the Musical) 2024 Trinity Musical Theatre Society To the Cast and Crew of this lovely Company that is Trinity Musical Theatre Society. You have an amazing Society full of talent and life and fun and song. I wish you all everything your hearts dream of and more. Love the talent you have been blessed with and enjoy every second. I know I will see many of you again someday down the road and I wish you all every happiness and success. Thank you and Bravo. Caroline Daly Jones Adjudicator Sullivan 2023 / 2024 Some photos kindly shared by the society - Photographer -  Connie Angela McGowan

INFO: Musical Theatre Mentoring Programme (Pilot)

We are delighted to announce our AIMS School Mentoring, Constructive Appraisal and Awards Scheme on a national level starting in academic...

We are delighted to announce our AIMS School Mentoring, Constructive Appraisal and Awards Scheme on a national level starting in academic year 2024- 2025  AIMS is a national organisation with musical theatre groups across the 32 counties of Ireland which endeavours to provide a service to all active member societies under its umbrella since its foundation in 1965. It provides an information service, an Insurance Scheme, a website and each year there is an Adjudication Scheme that culminates in an Awards banquet in June. Conscious of the huge talent that exists among young people throughout the country, AIMS set up an Education Committee in 1996 to look at ways of fostering and nurturing that talent. In 1997, the first youth workshop was held with enormous success and the participants had the added bonus of performing in the Waterford International Festival of Light Opera that year. The Workshops have continued successfully since and have grown in popularity. This year we are introducing the School Mentoring, Constructive Appraisal and Awards scheme.  This will be an opportunity to get advice from a professional working in the Musical Theatre space to help develop, sustain and affirm your work on musical theatre in your school or to help you establish a musical theatre practice.  As part of the pilot scheme, you will receive -  A visit from an AIMS appointed mentor, who will attend the show and will write up a constructive appraisal of the Show along with constructive suggestions to assist the production team in developing the standard of Musical Theatre production in your school.  There may be an online meeting organised after the visit as requested by the Show Director with the mentor at times agreed between the Mentor & Show Director. All aspects of selecting, producing, and staging a Musical Theatre show are open for discussion.  Possible nominations for the Awards Ceremony 2025 with prizes awarded.  Please find the application form here  and a poster advertising the programme. Complete the application form and return via email to schools@aims.ie   Annette, the administrator of our scheme will liaise with you on further details.  The overall cost of participating in this pilot scheme is €80. This is highly subsidised by funding from the Department of Education and funding from the Arts Council of Ireland.  We will be carrying out a review of this pilot programme at the end of the show season and your feedback will greatly enhance the programme moving forward.

Singin' In The Rain as presented by Sligo Musical Society

SINGIN' IN THE RAIN as presented by SLIGO MUSICAL SOCIETY, HAWKS WELL THEATRE, SLIGO. TUESDAY 13TH FEBRUARY – SATURDAY 17TH FEBRUARY,...

SINGIN' IN THE RAIN as presented by SLIGO MUSICAL SOCIETY, HAWKS WELL THEATRE, SLIGO. TUESDAY 13TH FEBRUARY – SATURDAY 17TH FEBRUARY, MATINEE 17TH FEBRUARY. Adjudication Performance, Wednesday 14th February. “Happiness can shine through, even in the darkest of times”. “Singing in the Rain” is set in the 1920’s and takes place in Hollywood. The story coincides with the changes involved in transitioning from “silent movies” to “talkies”. This enchanting musical is filled with many very memorable song and dance numbers and is Sligo Musical Society’s 23rd Production in the beautiful Hawks Well Theatre. What a buzz on the evening I attended which was the 2nd performance of the run, jam packed to the rafters with an electrifying chatter and laughter in the foyer from the patrons. This show was sold out completely. What a wonderful boost for the hardworking production team and indeed the full company. Chairperson Mr David McEvoy also Director single handily looked after me before, during and after the show with his time, his kindness and his effusive and lovely warm welcome, when he absolutely could have been elsewhere with his cast and full company, and it was so very much appreciated. I could have talked to you for hours more! I am so very grateful. Thank you. Mr McEvoy’s Direction was slick, professional, and authentic. Mr McEvoy produced a show that had a sprinkle of everything to ensure success. The dancers, the props, the actual shower of rain on stage (which was a vision of brilliance), the sets, the magnificent cast, the orchestra, the costumes, sound, beautiful lighting and the chorus sounding splendiferous in every single number was something to behold. From the Overture which was the 1st notes of “Singing in the Rain”, the stage was alight with movement on the curtains of light, and spots and a marvellous sound from the orchestra from note one and throughout. When the curtains DID open the opening scene really did feel like I was watching the Oscars such was the glamour and bling, the silver and colour that lit up the stage. The smallest of attention to detail can be so important, and can sometimes make the biggest impact, and I was immediately drawn to the wonderful microphone used in this opening scene. We were immediately taken back to the 1920’s. Simple yet so effective in drawing the audience into the era of this amazing show. There was a scene at the end of Act 1 before the Interval where the famous number “Singing in the Rain” is performed. During this number, water flowed from the ‘ sky’ in a beautiful rain shower, lots of it cascading down on to the stage floor. The water as it fell covered the width of the full stage, the lights caught it and it appeared to be dancing. It was MAGNIFICENT. The cast were very well drilled and really suited all their parts. Super and well done. Choreography was the responsibility of Thomas Spratt and Melody Urquart. Ms Urquart was also Production Assistant. “Broadway Melody” with Cosmo, dancers brought the house down. What a number. “Make Em Laugh” with Cosmo and the ladies was moved and choreographed so very well - it was a picture. “Good Morning, Good Morning” with Cathy, Don, & Cosmo was brilliant. So very elegantly moved the trio musical number flowed magnificently and these three were perfectly in sync with one another in this fun, lively showstopper of a number. Super choreography here. Well done! The Finale of Act 2 after the bows was so good. I loved it. Not a foot wrong and so much energy and perfection!. However, it was the magnificent, and beautiful “Singing in the Rain” with the ensemble and Don that for me was the highlight (one of many) for the evening for its choreography, performance and slickness. A stunning number. Mr Spratt and Ms Urquhart are a talented duo and I applaud you both and wish you all the best for your brightest of futures with your magnificent talent. Bravo. The Musical Director and Vocal Director was Charles O’Connor. The Orchestra numbered 7 in total with Mr O’Connor on Piano, Austin McManus on Violin, Don Swain, Clarinet / Flute, Brendan Kennedy, Trombone, Paul Kiernan Trumpet, Eddie Lee Bass, and Alan “Mack” McEvoy on Percussion. This Orchestra produced a lovely warm tone throughout and enhanced the show wonderfully including Overture, Entr’acte Act 2 and continued to play as the audience left the Theatre. This was a lovely touch. This Orchestra were a good team. Specific mention to “Fit as a Fiddle”, “You are my Lucky Star” “Moses Supposes” the fabulous “Good Morning” the empathy in Lena’s ( Emily Tansey) solo “What’s Wrong With Me” “Broadway Melody” and the oh so memorable and beautifully played number the world over renowned and beautiful “Singing In the Rain” to mention but a few. Well done. Stage Manager was Ms Lorna Davey. This show ran very smoothly. Given the amount of scene changes, projection scenes, movement of sets on stage and backstage this was always going to be tight with the backstage being very small, on both wing areas, and at back wall of theatre. Super set for “ Broadway Melody” along with “Make Em Laugh” with Cosmo, with the set being the Stage at the Monumental Pictures Studio. The film crew cameras were superbly made with great attention to detail even from where I was sitting. Mr Sid Phillips (Darren Kerr) was Sound Engineer (in Singing in the Rain as a character) and the sound room on stage was very authentic painted in a subtle but effective warm red was a great success as were the simple benches down stage for the “Audience” (cast members) to sit on to watch the “Duelling Cavalier”. Ms Davey as Stage Manager, throughout the performance and through many scene changes, your work was effective, clever, organised and simply done. I like simple. And it worked. Superb Stage Management here Ms Davey. Part of a great team. Congratulations. Stage Set (Design and Construction) and Stage Set (Projections) were the responsibility of Mr Wayne Handy and Projections by Broadway Media / James McManus. The sets were solid, moveable, colourful and appropriate to the era. The projections were consistently a highlight of the show throughout. They were all stunning, fitted beautifully and enhanced the production so much. Lighting Design was by Barry McKinney. I have already mentioned Mr McKinney’s artistry throughout this show and indeed you must have been a very busy man for the duration with lighting being a huge key to this shows success. Scenes such as “In My Imagination” with Kathy’s solo and Cosmo playing the piano was beautifully lit. Specific mention indeed to the Lighting in Broadway Melody. The stage was lit in a myriad of colour, reds, greens, whites, blues, spots, it was an absolute vision of light. I particularly loved your work in this number Mr McKinney and indeed throughout the show. It was beautiful. And I commend you greatly on your talent and how your lighting enhanced this performance so much and in so many areas. Beautiful. Sound and Sound Engineer was Mr Stephen Clancy, assisted by Ruairi Hanley. The sound was very good overall. I loved the “huge applause” effect throughout the show, I adored the thumping of Lena’s heartbeat when they put the microphone on her dress lapel, the sound when they draped it around the plant, and she kept turning her head in dismay and bang – the sound would be gone again. Sound for the ensemble numbers was particularly good, and indeed all the main characters in the front line. Costume Hire was from Nomac Costumes Waterford. With Wardrobe Co-Ordination the responsibility of Melanie Urquhart, Mavis Stanley, Pam Lindey, and the cast. Costumes were stunning with mention to the gorgeous red and sparkly ballgown of Lena Lamont in Act 2. A vision! But also, specific mention to the costumes for Sid Phillips who played the part of the Sound Engineer. Everything under the whole umbrella (pardon the pun!) of Costumes was a success and a visual treat and totally and utterly enhanced this show. Just so lovely. Well done. I must also mention that photography and filming was by Rory Maitland of Temperhound Productions. A fantastic job so very well done. The part of Don Lockwood was played by Matthew Whitehead. This young gentleman is a truly magnificent dancer with talent oozing from him in every single dance routine he performed on stage such as his showstopper “Singing in the Rain”. A lovely stage appearance and great interaction and stage chemistry at all times between himself, Cosmo and Kathy. Mr Whitehead was a very good leading man with a light lyrical voice that suited the part, and his portrayal of this character was very good. A solid performance with wonderful dance talent and technique and a lovely leading man. Well done. You did a super job. Cosmo Brown was played by Callum Blakeley. What an actor. Fantastic stage presence lovely fluidity to his moves, lovely chemistry between himself and Don Lockwood and boy this gentleman could move around the stage with aplomb and grace. Excellent acting by Mr Blakely, throughout. Particularly liked the scene with Mr Blakeley playing piano, and most entertaining in the fabulous “Broadway Melody”. Mr Blakeley created a truly lovely character in Cosmo. Great costumes, beautiful dance moves, vocals and acting and overall a really very good performance with excellent acting skills and all round multitasker with enormous talent. Well Done Mr Blakeley. You were a joy in this role. Congratulations. Lena Lamont was played by the gorgeous and oh so funny Emily Tansey. I adored this young lady in this role. Fabulous costumes ( loved that red dress and indeed the magnificent green one also!) and the wig but most especially I loved your character Ms Tansey. You were simply an awesome Lena Lamont. That high pitched squealing voice of yours I can still hear ringing in my ears in Wexford!!!  Your comedic timing was simply brilliant and I loved watching you in this role and indeed looked forward to every time you came on stage. Your acting in the projections was utterly fabulous. You were indeed born to play the role of Lena Lamont – truly and I loved your performance Ms Tansey, from beginning to end. Made for you. Well done, it was a joy to watch you throughout the show. I hope you enjoyed playing this role as we your audience enjoyed your performance. Thank you and Bravo! Young Don was played by Brendan O’Connor, and Young Cosmo was played by Ronan O’Connor. What a duo. Boys you were absolutely brilliant and your presence on stage at the beginning of the show set a huge precedence of what was to come for the rest of it. You were both so very good. I hope you do many more shows together as you get older you most certainly have the talent in bucketloads. So very well done boys. Congratulations. Kathy Selden was played by Jaidyn Geini ( beautiful name). What a strong solid melodic performance by Ms Geini, magnificent vocal, gorgeous dancing (especially in “Good Morning”) you were the link that brought everyone together in this show and you played the part so beautifully. You have such a strong singing voice, lyrical, beautiful tone, tender, and emotional and you sang from your heart. A truly lovely performance. Bravo. Sid Phillips/ Sound Engineer was played by Darren Kerr. Firstly – BRAVO on that magnificent solo dance routine centre stage where you pirouetted beautifully on tippy toes like a professional. I loved the pedal pushers, socks, v necked sleeveless jumper, and then your appearance in the black and white movie was class! This was a very solid performance in every area Mr Kerr and you really did this role credit. Well done. RF Simpson was played by Gerry Ryan. You oozed talent, stage presence, excellent movement around the stage, a lovely fun element in your manner with great facial expression and some very funny moments throughout. You had a lovely stage presence, and your rapport and connection in all your scenes with the rest of the cast was so professional. This was a great role played wonderfully Mr Ryan showing your vast experience in theatre land over many performances I have no doubt. You said in your bio that you were loving being a part of Singing in the Rain. Well I loved you in it!. Bravo. Roscoe Dexter was played by Danny Leonard. Lovely part well played by Mr Leonard. A bit stressed and dramatic extremely good speaking voice and moved very well around the stage especially in interactions with R.F Simpson. Mr Leonard was very strong in this role suitably cast , quite highly strung and had some great comedy moments. Mr Dexter worked very well in conjunction with the rest of the cast especially with R.F.Simpson. Zelda Zanders was played by Aoife Walsh. Introduced at the very beginning of the show brought the first laugh of the evening when it was announced as she walked along the catwalk it was her ninth marriage!!! Very glamorous good friend to Ms Lena Lamonte very striking stage appearance and gorgeous costumes (and head piece ) and moved beautifully and gracefully around the stage. The friendship she had with Lena was so lovely and I liked when these two were on stage together. Lovely stage presence and dramatic appearance beautifully played. Dora Bailey was played by Valerie Hamilton. Ms Bailey was a vision as a radio host with her crisp clear voice, concise and slick with her introductions, with great hair makeup knows everything about the stars and the gossip. Rod the male vocal coach was played by Aidan Coutts. Enthusiastic in this role, he helps the performers reach their potential with good humour and this role was played very well by Mr Coutts. 1st Assistant Director, played by Lenhard Zaprasis, 2nd Assistant Director played by Trevor Gorman who also played the Policeman and 3rd Assistant Director played by Benjamin Mead looked acted and played their parts very well. Small roles yet important roles to play in the overall story of moving silent movies to talking movies. Also Mr Trevor Gorman played the part of the policeman with great lightness and fun as he carted to Young Cosmo and Young Dan off stage at the beginning of the show after their dance number, which brought us the first laugh of the evening from the audience. All very well played.  Ms Dinsmore was played by Emer Henderson. What a lovely cameo role. Just the right amount of encouragement for Lena and then exasperation which was beautifully played. This was a really lovely part that was suited Ms Henderson beautifully offering direction and guidance to the players in the production company, played so very well by Ms Henderson who had indeed a lovely way and stage presence. Lovely part beautifully played Ms Henderson. Well done. Ian Howard played the part of the Production Tenor. What a gorgeous deep sounding voice light yet lyrical and sang this number beautifully and with lovely tone in what was one of the highlights of the show for me. A gorgeous visually aesthetic scene, enhanced by your lovely tone and melodic voice. The costumes here of the Beautiful Girls were magnificent. A vision. Well done all. Other parts I must mention were Nora McLoughlin Hairdresser and Burlesque Dancer, Kevin Sheridan the Butler, and Candy Girls Dancers. So very well done to each of you. Every single person on or off stage is a vital cog in the wheel of success for any production and all in your in your way with your own parts and responsibilities made this show work and work very well. A credit to each of you and bravo. The Chorus were simply gorgeous. Such a beautiful sound emanated throughout the Theatre for the duration of the show for each number with the sound resonating off the walls with its strength, melody and beauty. A well-rehearsed Chorus and indeed I would imagine many months of preparation going into what you created on stage on the evening. “Broadway Melody” I must mention (again!) because it simply was a highlight, “Singing in the Rain”, “You stepped out of a Dream” was magic to name but a few of your many numbers. Each one as good as the next.  Very well done Chorus. And finally, congratulations and thank you for a wonderful evening in the company of a wonderful ensemble . I did not want to leave such was the awesomeness of your welcome and your production and thank you all for the time given to me after the show to meet each and every one of you. It was a pleasure. Follow your dreams. I wish you well always. Caroline Daly Jones Adjudicator Sullivan 2023 / 2024 Please enjoy some photos below kindly shared by the society. Photographer was Donal Hackett

Young Frankenstein as presented by Claremorris Musical Society

YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, CLAREMORRIS MUSICAL SOCIETY, CO MAYO. 31st January – 4th February 2023 ADJUDICATION PERFORMANCE Saturday 3rd February...

YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, CLAREMORRIS MUSICAL SOCIETY, CO MAYO.  31st January – 4th February 2023 ADJUDICATION PERFORMANCE Saturday 3rd February 2024 “Deep Love at last , they’ve found deep love and now they will keep love forever inside”.  My first show of 2024 and what a lovely start to my year on the road. Once inside the Theatre I was greeted by the Society’s Chairperson June Allison-Keane and her team. Front of House was under the flag of CMS Committee, Peter McCallig and Claremorris Drama and Fringe Festival Committee, Christina Jordan, Alanah McDonagh, Joan McNicholas and Breda Delaney. An extremely professional team here with great coordination and teamwork, very well dressed with the gentlemen in their black-tie suits and the ladies dressed very elegantly indeed. This team had a sense of bubbliness and fun and yet were extremely professional and that in turn ensured the audience were seated quickly and efficiently. Director for this Production was Donna Ruane. Each character in this show was developed by Ms Ruane in such a way that the characters beautifully evolved and the story continuously flowed. The show moved swiftly, with great musicality and graceful movement throughout. There was great attention to detail in the individual accents. There were many lovely and indeed funny moments such as “Rolling in The Hay” without being overly done and this particular scene was comedy gold. I will mention that I have seen the charades skit used a few times before so it wasn’t new to me and maybe this has run its course. This was the only time I felt that comedy wasn’t natural. Casting was excellent and the sets were of a high standard and absolutely conveyed every scene that we were transported to as an audience. The direction in “Please Don’t Touch Me” with Elizabeth was a highlight and the development of “The Monster” was magnificent, from what he was to what he became. Overall, this was a very well directed show and well-done Ms Ruane. An asset to this Society and I hope your love of Theatre continues for a long time to come. Choreographer for this Production was Claudia O’Sullivan and was again overall very good indeed. Choreography in “Listen to your Heart” with Frankenstein and Inga with Inga performing her mouthwatering splits was a surprise and a wow factor with dance moves in this number simple, yet seductive and very appropriate. And of course, the wonderful splits from Inga drew a palpable intake of breath from the audience. I must add that in one or two of the Chorus numbers a few of the cast did not seem to be 100% confident in their dance routines however this was not a major criticism but merely an observation. “Putting On the Ritz” with wonderful choreography here with Frankenstein, The Monster and the canes, with the Chorus arriving onstage to join them, was a magnificent number in dance, and a vision of colour and bling. With the black gold and white glowing like a vision from the stage from the first note to the last and given the sheer magnitude of energy and great choreography here with Frankenstein and the Monster and their canes, this number was most definitely the highlight of the 2nd half of the show. The Choreography here was superb, tap was perfect, everybody gave it their all, and it was simply awesome. Musical Director for this Production was Ms Deirdre Lee. Ms Lee was also Conductor for this performance. The Opening of the show began with just the keyboard playing a solo joined shortly after by violin. This quiet opening with both these instruments was truly lovely, and immediately the audience were quiet and attentive. A beautiful sound emanated from the pit and continued throughout, without obvious fault or error. It was indeed a marvellous opening to your show and set the scene for what was to follow for the rest of the evening. ” He Vas my Boyfriend”, “Please send Me Someone”, “Roll in the Hay” and the glorious “Transylvania Mania” were a joy. “Puttin’ On the Ritz” was a showstopper with the full orchestra in full flight for this superb number, and rightly so, brought the house down with applause. There was a beautiful warm very well-balanced tone from Ms Lees Orchestral team here. I looked forward immensely to each musical number and I was never disappointed. Well done. Beautiful Musical Direction Ms Lee. Stage Manager for this Production was Mr David Keane. With Assistant Stage Manager Mr Dylan Keane. This is a good team ably assisted by their Stage Crew Josephine Gallagher and Lauren Dempsey. The Dry Ice effect on stage was the first of many jobs for this team. Sets moved very easily, and Set Changes were slick quick and successful. Dry ice in the opening worked very well creating the scene of “Transylvania”, and its dark foreboding atmosphere and location. The Laboratory was a lovely set and actually got better in Act II. I particularly loved the change of set in Act 1 to “Rolling in the Hay” and the effects of the black horses with Igor, Frankenstein and Inga was simply super. The rapid change to the library was excellent. Set Design and Construction was by John Wright, Stage Wright, and KIMS. Sets were clever, many of them dual purpose and used efficiently and effectively and again fitted very well into and onto this vast wide stage beautifully. The Laboratory sets were brilliant. Lighting was Mr Paul Kelly. Personally, I loved the lighting in this show. Dark, impressive, eery, creepy, but also bright, busy and colourful. Specific mentions to Mr Kelly's expertise were the lovely lighting in the Hermits solo “Please Send Me Someone”, and the blue led lighting in the number “Listen to your Heart” with Inga and Frankenstein. The spots used for “Deep Love” in purples were extremely effective and the spots during the show really added depth and texture to the characters and there were many spots throughout, in varying colours such as the blues for the Dungeon. Well done. Sound Engineer was Mr Alan Dunne. Sound was very good. I did have one very small issue regarding Frau Bluchers microphone in Act 1. I really did feel it could have been louder in her solo number as I found that her voice was not as loud as it should or could be. HOWEVER, sound overall was very good, very effective and professional. Main characters sounded great, particularly Igor, Inga, The Monster and Frankenstein, who had an enormous amount of both dialogue and song. The Chorus may I add sounded beautifully and this was such a success. Thank you, Mr Dunne, and well done. Back stage Mics were supplied by Mr Kevin McCarthy, and really worked very well. Costumes were by Leo’s Theatrical Costumes UK. Costumes from the opening scene were a delight. Inspector Kemps medals lighting up the stage and gleaming from his lapel, along with his prosthetic arm – with fantastic sound effects! were a vision. Mr Kemps costume was very good. The Monsters (played by Enda Mulchrone) costume and indeed makeup was a massive success, along with Igor’s (played by Mervyn Fahy) black costume with cloak and his constantly moving hump (another fun element) was brilliant. Ingas (played by Nicole Scott) costumes were gorgeous, with mention to her white ballroom dress with the feathers in the second half of the show was beautiful and suited this young lady perfectly. Makeup was by Amanda Conlon, MUA and Joanne Delaney, with WIG Hire by Ali Murphy Wig Hire. Fabulous. Ingas gorgeous blonde Marilyn Monroe curls, Frau Bluchers severe slicked back not a hair out of place bun, Young Frankenstein’s mad almost burnt like hair, (the mad scientist look), the Hermits long tresses and beard, and the hairstyles for the ensemble I simply cannot fault. Makeup by Amanda Conlon, and Joanne Delaney were also superb. Well done. As there is nobody specifically allocated the role of Props I really must commend this area and the team at all times. I loved the lit lanterns in “He is Loose”, Elizabeth's diamanté encrusted jewellery that shone like a beacon from the stage, to name but a few of the very effective small additions to this show for the characters that were very impressive indeed so well done to the Props crew. Young Frankenstein was played by Mr David Alexander. Mr Alexander looked great in this role; the mad scientist look was effective, a highly intelligent gentleman whose life evolved around his work and his genius in science. A lovely somewhat distracted relationship with Elizabeth his fiancée in the beginning - there was an air of I’m not sure if he really knew she was there sometimes such was his fixation on science. Mr Alexander was a great character, acting this role very well, lovely comedy and chemistry between himself, Inga, Igor and The Monster – Mr Alexander was also a key player throughout this show and gentlemanly in his ways, and worked the stage very well. Particular mention to his superb acting in “Rolling in The Hay” I split my sides laughing, some very funny double entendre meaning with Inga here that were so funny and beautifully acted with great timing. Lovely singing voice, and a strong stage presence throughout Mr Alexander played this massive and key role very well and was indeed very effective as Young Frankenstein and hugely enhanced the enjoyment of the show for the audience throughout. No mean feat and very well-done Mr Alexander. Igor was played by Mervyn Fahy. What a magnificent job Mr Fahy did with this character. Funny, eloquent, fantastic facial expression and comedic timing who was a vital link throughout this show between all the main characters - visually brilliant and a wonderful actor. I loved the comedy in playing the accordion when Frankenstein and Inga were “busy” when Elizabeth arrived as a surprise! In the scene when Frankenstein is stuck in the laboratory with The Monster, and they were not to open the door if Frankenstein told them to, Igors reaction here was so funny, looking at Inga and Frau Blucher and saying nah, there was a boldness here like a little 7 year old child!! Brilliant. Singing, dancing, movement, stage presence, visually, wonderful rapport with fellow characters and nimbleness around the stage along with magnificent makeup, and costume and the ever-moving hump (!) made Igor’s character for me personally one of the highlights of the show. I loved you in this role. Every single moment. You were a superb Igor, and congratulations! Inga was played by Nicole Scott. What a gorgeous fun loving, cheeky flirtatious young lady Ms Scott was in this role. With a gorgeous singing voice, fabulous wig and costumes, and a smile that lit up the room, Ms Scott was indeed a truly lovely Inga. Great chemistry between Ms Scott and Mr Alexander and indeed these were a lovely “couple” together. Ms Scott as Inga had lovely facial expression, a lovely fluidity to her moves and great rapport throughout with all characters. Looked great, sang beautifully, and overall was a huge part of the success of this show and a magnificent leading lady. Ms Scott you were a gorgeous Inga and I liked you in this role very much. A key player and important link in the overall story congratulations on a lovely fine strong performance. Well done. Frau Blucher was played by Vivienne Lee. A very talented actress, Ms Lee was a strong Frau Blucher in looks, expression, visually, dress, humour and voice. A dark, stern, eery and mysterious character in the beginning, in love with her beloved now deceased Victor Frankenstein, this role was beautifully played by Ms Lee. Facial expressions and particularly your eyes, really brought this character to life and after a while you softened and you wore your heart on your sleeve for “He Vas My Boyfriend”. Sung beautifully, with such pain and sorrow and yet performed magnificently. Your interactions again and your comedic timing, were excellent and always appropriate. A truly great role and very well performed. You are a magnificent actress Ms Lee, and you played the part of Frau Blucher beautifully and with such passion and heart and soul. A very strong performance. Congratulations. Elizabeth was played by Mary Dempsey. A complete high end maintenance Diva if there ever was one! I loved Ms Dempsey in her portrayal of this role. Dramatic, ice queen like, very posh, rich Daddy, engaged to Young Frankenstein – but always a step apart from him where “Please Don’t Touch Me” was fantastic, brought the house down and a fabulous number in this show. Gorgeous part, with excellent facial expression, eye rolling, disdain, poshness, and constant enormous drama along with your entourage of 5 in Act 2 who looked after your needs and travelled everywhere with you. Ms Dempsey brought the character to life. I had a soft spot for you in this role. From the very first moment you made your grand entrance on stage, and again every time you came on stage and indeed in every scene, and I found the energy and lightness lifted a little and you were indeed a truly lovely Elizabeth. And a total and utter DIVA and I loved you for it. A pleasure to be in the audience with your performance. Beautifully played Ms Dempsey. Inspector Kemp was played by Gerard Scott. Lovely introduction to Mr Kemp in the beginning of the show, great costume and good comedy with the prosthetic unlubricated arm with the sound effects and added that extra bit of fun to this character. A key role in the village I liked the way you came into the audience and took a seat in the auditorium at one stage which was clever direction, good acting and stage presence and clear diction. Well done. The Monster was played by Enda Mulchrone. Well, where do I start with this young man. What a role. What a magnificent visual you created Mr Mulchrone as The Monster. Great stage presence, very assured in your walking – on what seemed like you were on stilts you were so tall, and in the beginning a sense of foreboding, with your huge stature and grunts, with magnificent acting, movement, and a genuine talent here for the stage. Fabulous makeup and costume and excellent sound effects made you absolutely one of the main highlights of this show and I looked forward to you arriving on stage each time. This part became the key to the success of the show, and you made it work. “Putting On the Ritz” was a highlight but also every scene you were a part of lifted in its energy and comedy and strength. I loved what you made of playing “The Monster” Mr Mulchrone. A simply glorious performance for all the above reasons and more. Congratulations and I am sure your presence will grace many more stages in your life and long may it continue. Bravo. Harold The Hermit was played by Ronan Egan. What a gorgeous character Mr Egan created in this role as Harold the Hermit. Such a beautiful singing voice, rich and with depth and a lovely lyrical quality in your solo “Please Send Me Someone” Aww!! What a gorgeous number sung from the heart, telling the audience and the world of your loneliness in your life, with your sparse living conditions and existence. Well done Mr Egan. I thoroughly enjoyed your performance here and I commend you on the lovely character that you created in Harold the Hermit. Well done. The Chorus produced a wonderful sound throughout this show and production with lovely numbers and beautiful harmonies such as the gorgeous “Happiest Town” to “He’s Loose”, “Puttin on The Ritz”, and the number I can’t stop singing in my own head “Together Again” (I just loved this number with yourselves). A showstopper indeed. Sound was so lovely in the Chorus numbers with all the above I commend you all greatly. There’s a part of me that saw even from my seat what a wonderful camaraderie there is within this group and amongst each one of you. Your singing was an absolute pleasure to listen to and in this Society, I wish I could have heard you sing more, and I hope I get an opportunity to someday. Bravo and well done to you all. I thoroughly enjoyed my evening in Claremorris. I was bowled over by the Theatre itself and its beauty, and I loved what you brought to your audience. You transported me beautifully from Claremorris Co. Mayo to Transylvania with great aplomb, enormous talent and pride and I admire you all greatly and indeed congratulate you all on what you produced on stage here tonight for your 17th Production. May there be many more to come and I wish you all, most sincerely, all the best always for the continuation for many years into the future for your lovely Society. Thank you and Well done. Caroline Daly Jones Sullivan Adjudicator 2023 / 2024 Some photos kindly shared by the society - Photographer credit  Paul Kelly - Indigo Lighting

Guys and Dolls as presented by Entr’acte

Guys and Dolls as presented by Entr’acte Date of Adjudicated Performance: Saturday 2nd March 2024. Entr’acte’s biggest achievement, with...

Guys and Dolls  as presented by Entr’acte Date of Adjudicated Performance: Saturday 2nd March 2024. Entr’acte’s biggest achievement, with their production of the ever-popular Guys and Dolls, was to give the show a fresh coat of paint without losing sight of the original masterpiece. The show was a kind of fusion of cartoon characterization and cabaret stylization, on the one hand, employing musical and comical devices to accentuate comedic business, and on the other, presenting the show on a cabaret stage, opting for minimal scenery, a great lighting plot and a cracking pace that was rarely interrupted. The lighting design for this production was very good, as indeed, it needed to be, given the lack of a structured set. In its place, we were given three rows of cabaret lighting that were very well-used, a New York sky-line behind an on-stage orchestra, which was also well-lit, and very good area lighting for the various scenes, always with appropriate back or side lighting to add atmosphere and ambiance. The musical numbers were particularly well-lit, and The Crapshooters Ballet was a work of art. Isolated spotlights were used effectively to introduce each character to the story in a frozen moment, with an accompanying musical trill. Stage manager, Kate Canavan, was probably enjoying tea and biscuits for most of the show, as the cast themselves seemed responsible for moving all the props and furniture, but I do appreciate that such slick operations require excellent organization skills in advance of the performance. Even against a full orchestra, the sound balance was pretty perfect with very good cueing of the radio mics, and good sound effects. The biggest benefit of Director, Niamh McGowan’s decision to opt for this cabaret style, was pace, in a show that never faltered in its continuity, with scene after scene running seamlessly together with only the use of furniture and a change of lighting to signify the altered locations. The furniture was invariably choreographed into place by members of the cast with much precision. Did I miss the scenery? Well, perhaps a little, based on my own perception that when Damon Runyon paints a picture, (in his writing) it’s about characters and their environment. However, it could be said that this style does incline one to focus more sharply on the characters, and in paying tribute to Runyon, Niamh’s attention to individual characterizations was excellent. Indeed, I was much impressed that everyone on-stage seemed to have an individual identity; for example, each member of the Mission band had very distinct character traits. The touches that made a great impact by being unique and unexpected were the sound effects, nicely orchestrated, that accompanied much of the comedic business, most notably, the rolling of the dice in the Crapshooters scene, which was pure cartoon in nature and execution, and the little vignettes of the flights to and from Havana, adding great comedy and effectively covering the transition from one location to another. This cabaret style of production also gave us the benefit of enjoying a full 20-piece orchestra, on-stage, for the entire show, nesting unobtrusively below a good background of a New York skyline. And what an orchestra! Rich, melodic strings, a rasping and vibrant brass section and the laid-back, rhythmic jazz and swing styles of the reeds, creating a well-balanced, beautifully controlled and consistently enchanting accompaniment to the show. Musical Director, Róisín Heenan, not only conducted the players with aplomb, but had also done excellent work on arranging and adding a plethora of sound effects to accompany the various quirky touches that this production threw up. I also enjoyed the strolling players in Havana and in the Mission Band. Róisín had also vocally prepared the company to produce quality in their harmony, their diction and their strong delivery of their music. Things looked all proper and correct in the Wardrobe department. Well-fitted suits or jackets and trousers for the crapshooters, and good attention to footwear as well. The ladies had appropriate styles, from their general day dresses to the traditional uniforms for the Mission Band. However, having embraced the overall Cabaret style of the production, I’m not sure that ‘all proper and correct’ was the best option in costuming. I can’t fault the era-appropriate accuracy of the styles on display, but I did feel that Bushel and a Peck could have had more Razzle, Take Back Your Mink could have had more Dazzle and Havana could have been much more flamboyant and exaggerated. It was almost as if you gave yourself a license to go to extremes, but then reined-in the very scenes where you could have maximized the Cabaret effect. That said, the Hot-Box costumes were more than adequate, and Havana did have a holiday feel to it. Perhaps a matching set of fur-stoles would have looked better than the random selection that was used for Take Back Your Mink. Very good attention was given to wigs and hairstyles, and there was a good noticeable difference between the plain Jane make up of the Mission girls and the flashier make-up of the Dolls and Dancers. Props for the show were very good, except for a rather tatty newspaper stand in the final scene. In the role of Sky Masterson, Morgan Moore had a cool, cavalier attitude to risk, and a reluctant yet moveable attitude to romance, falling in love almost by accident with Miss Sarah Brown. His character was strong and well-defined, even if the hands constantly in the pockets irked me a little. Vocally, at his most tender, there was a hint of Michael Bublé about his delivery, while his bigger numbers could perhaps have been more robust, but there was no doubting his pitch, which was spot on. As Sarah Brown, Caoilfhionn Ní Dhúlaing acted the role to perfection, believably naïve and insecure in her early scenes with Sky, devout without piety in her religious fervour and deliciously embracing her hitherto subdued Joie de Vivre when she’d had a few Bacardis. Every scene was thoughtful and well-balanced. Vocally, she was at her best in her more upbeat numbers, where her voice sounded relaxed and comfortable, while the slower romantic soprano pieces occasionally seemed slightly forced, despite being nicely in tune. Michael Bergin played Nathan Detroit with a wonderful sense of physical comedy. His legs, his arms, his torso and his face all seemed to have different controls, none of which seemed to be connected, such were his contortions of discomfort in presenting his character as a fragile man, living on the edge of his nerves. After first fearing he might have some unfortunate affliction, I quickly realized that it was all deliberate, and highly comical. His facial reactions, particularly, were excellent, and his timing was top-notch in this wonderful performance. He could sing too. As his long-suffering fiancé, Adelaide, Louise O’Connor gave an assured comedic performance, combined with a sincere portrayal of low-self-esteem, but ultimately a presence that refused to go unrecognized. Her vocal delivery was strong, and she fronted the Hot-Box numbers with confidence and charisma. Adelaide’s Lament show-cased all her attributes. A vocally strong delivery of Sit Down You’re Rockin’ The Boat was the high-point of Daniel Whelan’s performance as Nicely-Nicely Johnson. This performer does not lack confidence and may even have been a tad too ‘cool’ in the role, but that went hand in hand with great vocal and physical comedy. He was particularly good alongside Cian Gallagher, who was absolutely perfect as Benny Southstreet. His “I’m alright!” after he gave testimony in the Mission scene, epitomized perfect delivery, perfect tone and perfect facial reaction. His performance throughout was strong, compelling and very in-character, accompanied by a great vocal quality. Gary Finnegan immersed himself into the character of East-Cicero thug, Big Jule, displaying a great wealth of comedic ability and a fine sense of rhythm. His antics during the crap game were splendidly choreographed and delivered. Equally impressive was Colm Lombard, who gave a comically sinister interpretation of Harry the Horse. Again, in the Mission scene, his timing was excellent. Damien Sweeney added good vocal quality to the Fugue For Tinhorns, singing the role of Rusty Charlie, while he showed great song and dance ability throughout the show. Stephen Grimes was a blustering Lieut Brannigan, very capably giving the NYPD a bad name through his ineptitude in dealing with the local miscreants. Casting Arvide Abernathy as Sarah’s ‘Aunt’, rather than her Uncle or Grandfather, was a departure that paid off very nicely, affording Niamh Carroll the opportunity to display tender acting and a beautifully melodic delivery of More I Cannot Wish You. Catherine Fox combined the severity of a Mission General with a comical thrill at being flirted with, to create a well-balanced role as Matilda B. Cartright, and within the ranks of the Mission band, there were convincing and comical characterizations from Claire O’Brien as Martha, Muirne Shaw as Agatha, Eoghan Funge as Calvin and from Aisling Bonner, Aideen Carew and Caoimhe Bermingham. Joe Jennings as Angie the Ox, Maurice Wright as Joey Biltmore, Dean Mulraney as the MC of the HotBox, Maurice Treacy as the Waiter and Peter Richardson as the Drunk, all made significant contributions to the show. Alice O’Loughlin-Kennedy deserves special mention for making a complete ‘ass’ of herself as Mimi! The Crapshooters, the Hot-Box Girls and the general population who comprised the chorus were wonderful as an ensemble, while assuming individual identities, whether as airline staff, shoppers, gamblers or Cuban party-goers. They performed with confidence and cohesion at all times, and there was never any question about their vocal abilities, producing super harmonies and bundles of vocal energy. Their dance and movement were extremely energetic and very well-executed. And talking of dancing… The well-thought out and imaginative creativity of Choreographer, Leah Meagher, was evident in every number in the show, from a well-devised opening sequence, which was acted as well as it was danced, to the glamour and quirkiness of the Hot Box Dancers, to the amusing and animated Guys and Dolls and Sit Down You’re Rockin’ The Boat. Brilliant patterning and positioning went into the Havana routine to keep it vibrant and racy, but it was the Crapshooters Ballet that brought the house down, not only superbly choreographed, but equally superb in execution. Congratulations to all involved for taking a tried and tested traditional show and putting your own stamp on it. It is easy to appreciate the thought that went all aspects of the show, making it a visual, technical and talent-laden triumph of musical achievement. Thank you for such a great night of entertainment. Peter Kennedy Gilbert Adjudicator 2023 / 2024 Some Photos kindly shared by the society - Photographer - Ciarán MacChoncarraige

SULLIVAN SOCIETIES

Below is our comprehensive list of SULLIVAN societies.

If you would like the contact details for a society, please contact either the Registrar or the National PRO. If you would like information distributed to our members for a small cost, please Contact our National Secretary.

Society
9 Arch Musical Society
Aghada Centre Theatre Group
Arklow Panto Creations
Baldoyle Musical Society
Ballinasloe Musical Society
Ballyshannon Musical Society
Bardic Theatre
Bellvue Academy of Performing Arts
Birr Stage Guild
Bosco Drama Group
Boyle Musical Society
Bray Musical Society
Carrigaline Musical Society
Castlebar Musical & Dramatic Society
Castlerea Musical Society
Cecilian Theatre Arts
Claremorris Musical Society
Cork City Musical Society
Craic Theatre
Creative Minds Productions
Currid School of Performing Arts
DCU Drama Society
Donegal Youth Musical Theatre
Dun Laoghaire Musical & Dramatic Society
Dundalk Musical Society
Encore Performing Arts Academy
Enniscorthy Musical Society
Ennistymon Choral Society
Fermanagh Musical Theatre
Fermoy Musical Society
Fortwilliam Musical Society
Fun House Theatre Company
Glasnevin Musical Society
Glenamaddy Musical Society
Glencullen Dundrum MDS
Golden Apple Players, The
Greasepaint Productions
Inchicore Variety Group
Jack Cunningham Productions
Kells Musical Society
Kill Musical & Dramatic Society
Killarney Musical Society
Kilmacud Musical Society
Kilmainham Inchicore Musical Society
Kilrush Choral Society
Letterkenny Musical Society
Light Opera Society of Tralee (LOST)
Limerick Musical Society
Lisnagarvey Operatic and Dramatic Society
Londonderry Musical Society
Loughrea Musical Society
Mary I Dramatic Arts Society
Mitchelstown Musical Society
Moycullen
Naas Musical Society
Nenagh Choral Society Ltd
Nenagh Choral Society Youth Academy
Newcastlewest Musical Society
Newry Musical Society
Newry Youth Performing Arts
North East Musical and Dramatic Society
North Wexford Musical Theatre
O'Connell Musical Society
Phoenix Performing Arts College
Phoenix Productions
Pioneer Musical & Dramatic Society
Pop-Up Theatre, Sligo
Portadown Phoenix players
Portmarnock Musical & Dramatic Society
Queen's University Belfast Musical Theatre Society
Rathmines & Rathgar Musical Society
Ratoath Musical Society
Roundwood Variety Group
Roundwood Variety Group
Rush Panto Society
Sheevawn Musical Youth Theatre
Sligo Fun Company
Sligo Musical Society
St. Agnes' Musical Society
St. MacNissi's Choral & Dramatic Society
St. Michael's Theatre Musical Society
St. Patrick's Hall Musical Society, Strabane
Stage Left Youth Theatre
Stage One New-Musical Group (S.O.N.G.)
Striking Productions Carlow
Studio 55 Productions
The Little Sea Musical Society
The Odd Theatre Company
Tralee Musical Society Youths
Trinity Musical Theatre Society
Tullyvin Musical Society
Twin Productions
UCC Musical Theatre Society
University of Limerick Musical Theatre Society
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