CULTURE NIGHT PLAYS WELL IN KANTURK
IN years to come people will insist they attended Culture Night 2017 in The Daily Grind, Kanturk in the same way that thousands claim to have been in the GPO in 1916 and Thomond Park in 1978. The truth is the coffee-shop was packed to capacity 20 minutes before show-time last Friday night. The ‘House Full’ sign was placed on the door at 7.40 for the 8pm show and more than two dozen unlucky people had to be turned away.
The fortunate 70 people who gained admittance to the rehearsed reading of two new plays by Aidan O’Keeffe and Mary Angland were treated to a wonderful night’s free entertainment. As the MC for the night, Jacqui Feely stated in her introduction that the event in The Daily Grind was one of 1,300 happening throughout Ireland on Culture Night. Few, if any, of these events will have seen such anticipation and excitement in the crowd prior to show-time. The first play was written and directed by Aidan O’Keeffe. Following on from the success of last year’s ‘ The Mill Road Letters’, Part Two of ‘ The Ceann Toirc Trilogy’, ‘ The Railway Tavern’ starred Maureen Sheehan, Philip Linehan, Tim Lynch Jnr and John O’Sullivan. Set in 1998 in Cashman’s Bar (aka The Railway Tavern), the play concerned the upheaval caused by the return of a woman who’d left Kanturk under a cloud two years previously. Mixing comedy and heart-rending drama, the hourlong play captivated the audience from the very outset. The quartet of actors were superb, the musical interludes worked a treat, and the props manager, John Jordan, ensured the scene changes were flawless. The anticipation is already growing for 2018’s final part of ‘ The Ceann Toirc Trilogy’. The second play of the night, ‘Funeral Blues’ written by Mary Angland and directed by Sheila O’Connor, was a comedy which saw performers Teresa O’Keeffe and Sean Bowman reminisce over local characters long dead, but whose deeds while they were alive ensured them immortality in the small community they hailed from – though perhaps not the kind of notoriety they ended up leaving as a legacy behind them. Again, the play was a complete triumph with the audience howling with laughter at the hilarious script and tremendous acting. Overall, this was one Culture Night event that could be classed as an unqualified success. Due to the exceptional crowds that were unable to be accommodated on the night, it is envisaged that the plays may be performed again at a later date. Keep an eye on ‘Kanturk Calling’ for more details anon.
Timmie Lynch Jnr, Philip Linehan, Maureen Sheehan, and John O’Sullivan staged ‘The Railway Tavern’ during Culture Night at the Daily Grind, Kanturk.
Teresa O’Donoghue and Sean Bowman acted in ‘Funeral Blues’ which was written by Mary Angland and directed by Sheila O’Connor.
Above: Carmel Galvin, Kanturk, Eileen O’Doherty, Newmarket, and Nora Daly, Newmarket attended the Culture Night events at the Daily Grind, Kanturk. Right: Neily Moylan enjoying Culture Night at the Daily Grind.
Helen Ducey, Boherbue, and Eileen Kelly, Meelin. Photos: Sheila Fitzgerald
John and Peig O’Keeffe, Kanturk, Noreen O’Connell, Boherbue, and Margaret Murphy, Boherbue pictured at the Daily Grind
Noreen Kelleher with her daughters Eileen Cashman and Catherine Kelleher enjoying Culture Night at the Daily Grind, Kanturk.
Jackie Feely, Dromagh, Eileen McAuliffe, Dromagh, and Marie Buckley, Kiskeam enjoying Culture Night at the Daily Grind.