Date Published: 29-Jun-2011
A fascinating soap opera of a family bickering,” is how theatre director Edward Hall describes Richard III, which his company Propeller will be performing at this year’s Galway Arts Festival.
This is the second Galway visit by the all-male Propeller Company, which made its Arts Festival debut two years ago with The Merchant of Venice and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
“We had such an enjoyable time the last time,” he says, “it felt like people watching it received what we had done just for what it was, with no preconceptions.”
Propeller has a track record of pairing Shakespeare’s plays, performing a comedy and a tragedy in repertory, which they will be doing at the Arts Festival, when Richard III is staged alongside The Comedy of Errors.
“I started pairing plays a while ago, mostly out of artistic interest and also, doing two plays by the same writer means you get better at doing it,” says Edward.
This immersion in Shakespeare is fascinating process for both director and performers.
“It’s not the similarities but the differences you notice. That’s the extraordinary thing. With these two, you hardly think it’s the same writer,” he muses.
While Edward uses the word ‘bickering’ to describe the family strife in Richard III, the term barely begins to do justice to Richard’s antics.
Richard III was the last king of the House of York. He was killed in 1845 during the War of the Roses, leading to the reign of the Tudors.
A hunchback with a limp who was scorned for his deformities, he became king after a murderous campaign which saw him kill his brother, nephews and several other family members.
It is a play which delves deep into English history, but says Edward Hall, it’d be a mistake to think that English people are more knowledgeable about the story than audiences from anywhere else. In any case, you don’t need the back story.
“All you need to know is that he is a bad guy and if the audience don’t know that, they soon will.”
People will also “recognise the politics, the greed, the ironies and you are horrified at the violence and the almost charmingly awful way Richard orchestrates it all”.
But while Richard is a baddie, it’s not all black and white.
“In the last part of the play, he dies like a warrior and there’s a curious heroism about the last part of the play for me,” says the director, adding that it’s not for nothing that some of Shakespeare’s most famous lines, “a horse, a horse, my kingdom for a horse”, are from that heroic moment.
Edward points out that Shakespeare was writing this play under the reign of the Tudor queen, Elizabeth I and so, he had to portray Richard III as a villain.
“But he gave him a hump and a limp and had him murder everybody, and then had him die a hero, so . . . ,” he reasons that Shakespeare didn’t really see it as a black and white story either.
Propeller premiered this double bill in January in Sheffield, when the highly visual productions, complete with music and masks, were lauded. The Daily Telegraph described Richard III as ‘a tour de force’ praising its “OTT relish for bloody gore” and its “intelligent, witty” interpretation. But it didn’t come easy.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Galway ‘Park and Ride’ could become permanent
Date Published: 07-May-2013
A park ‘n’ ride scheme from Carnmore into Galway city could become a permanent service if there is public demand.
That’s according to the Chief Executive of Galway Chamber of Commerce, Michael Coyle.
The pilot scheme will begin at 7.20 next Monday morning, May 13th.
Motorists will be able to park cars at the airport carpark in Carnmore and avail of a bus transfer to Forster Street in the city.
Buses will depart every 20 minutes at peak times and every 30 minutes at offpeak times throughout the day, at a cost of 2 euro per journey.
Tuam awaits UK hay import as overnight rainfall adds to fodder crisis
Date Published: 09-May-2013
Tuam is now awaiting a third import of hay from the UK as overnight rainfall has increased pressure on farmers struggling to source fodder.
A total of ten loads are expected at Connacht Gold stores throughout the West with a load expected at the Airglooney outlet this evening or tomorrow.
Farmers throughout the county have been struggling to cope with the animal feed shortage and a below than normal grass growth due to unseasonal weather conditions.
Overnight rainfall in the Galway area has also added to the problem making ground conditions in many areas are quite poor.
Joe Waldron, Agricultual Advisor with Connacht Gold says farmers in short supply can contact the Airglooney outlet on 093 – 24101.
Transport Minister urges end to Bus Eireann strike action
Date Published: 12-May-2013
The Transport Minister is urging drivers at Bus Éireann to engage in talks with management, in an effort to bring their strike action to an end.
There were no Bus Éireann services operating out of Galway today as a result of nationwide strike action by staff affiliated with the national bus and rail union.
Up to 20 Bus Éireann drivers are continuing to picket outside the bus depot at the docks in the city this evening.
Drivers from other unions have decided not to cross the picket line and go into work today – causing the disruption to be even worse.
Bus drivers are protesting against five million euro worth of cuts to their overtime and premium pay – cuts which Bus Eireann says are vital to ensure the future viability of the company.
The majority of services nationwide are disrupted, and the union say strike action will continue until management are willing to go back into negotiations.
However, it’s not expected to affect school services next week.
Galway bay fm news understands that around 70 percent, or over 100 Galway bus Eireann drivers are affiliated with the NBRU.