Today the 30 chosen projects to move to the next stage have been announced!
As part of our 30th year, we have recently set out to find one, big, ambitious play, that bursts with humanity and tackles a subject about which the playwright feels passionate - A PLAY FOR IRELAND that captures the zeitgeist of the country, that demands to be produced!
We would firstly like to thank everyone who submitted for taking the time and effort to submitting their idea to Fishamble’s A PLAY FOR IRELAND. We were delighted to receive 372 submissions. The quality of the proposals and the writing samples was extremely high, and we were sorry not to be able to include as many ideas as we would have liked.
The selection process involved the ideas and samples being read by a panel from Fishamble and each of the venues nominated by the playwrights. This process was completed 'blind', so no one had access to the names or personal details of the applicants.
Then Fishamble and the venues all created a longlist, by choosing about a fifth of the submissions. At this point, personal details of the writers were added to the longlisted submissions, to ensure balance in gender, geography, etc. Everyone created a shortlist from this selection, and then the task of comparing notes, ensuring all partners had a selection of their top choices in the final selection, and checking how this overlapped with the playwrights' venue preferences, began. We know that many great ideas, by super playwrights, were not included in the final list, and hope that these plays will find other routes to development and, hopefully, production.
A PLAY FOR IRELAND chosen submissions contain stories on political change and tension, rural communities, gap years, tourism and heritage, relationships with history, facing adulthood, storm Ophelia, DNA testing, drunken walks home, the changing workplace and relationships within it, adoption and foster care, family crisis, alcoholic parents, health care reform, nursing homes, small business owners, humanity and community, Irish independence, republicanism and nationalism, the Irish language, rap music, donut chains, government departments, eviction, the concept of home, prophecy, broken hearts, and theatre.
This is a two-year process, which encourages the citizens of Ireland, and non-Irish citizens living on the island of Ireland, to write plays, engaging people aged 18+, from all communities, throughout the country. The initiative will mentor playwrights throughout the island of Ireland, and result in the production of a very special new play.
A PLAY FOR IRELAND is run in partnership with six venues across the country, in Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Galway and Belfast; they : Belltable / Lime Tree, Draíocht, Everyman, Lyric Theatre, Pavilion Theatre, Town Hall Theatre. 5 projects will be chosen to take part in the initiative in each venue, making a total of 30 plays, to mark Fishamble’s 30th birthday this year.
The writers of the 30 chosen plays (33 playwrights involved) are:
BELLTABLE – LIME TREE THEATRE, Limerick
Michael Hilliard Mulcahy
Jeda De Brí & Finbarr Doyle
Noelle Brown & Karen Cogan
LYRIC THEATRE, Belfast
Michael Patrick & Oisín Kearney
PAVILION THEATRE, Dún Laoghaire
Ciara Elizabeth Smyth
TOWN HALL THEATRE, Galway
Marina Ní Dhubháin
The playwrights will all gather for the first workshop in Dublin on Sat 28th April and then during 2018 they will take part in 4 workshops in their respective venues. At the end of the year they will each take part in one-on-one workshops for final notes on their draft script. After that 6 projects will go through to Phase 2 in 2019.
We are also delighted to announce that the Transport Partner for A PLAY FOR IRELAND is Irish Rail.
Fishamble: The New Play Company is supported by