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‘Irish Everyman’ is hero of Peter’s debut play

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Peter Gowen as the orphaned Pakie in The Chronicles of Oggle. The actor also wrote the one-man play.

He is best known as an actor whose credits include Love/Hate and The Butcher Boy – now Peter Gowen is touring Ireland his own one-man show, The Chronicles of Oggle.

The Cork actor will visit Galway on Thursday next, April 9, with this hilarious and heartbreaking drama of small towns and even smaller minds, which premiered in his native Youghal in April 2013 and subsequently played Cork’s Everyman Theatre.  The play has just been published by Bloomsbury in London and this tour celebrates that event.

Peter is no stranger to Galway, having lived here for periods during the 1990s, when he worked with Druid Theatre, and in the early 2000s when he appeared in Trad by Mark Doherty which was commissioned by Galway Arts Festival and went on to tour festivals from Edinburgh to Adelaide.

“It’s a comedy but it points towards darker things,” says Peter of The Chronicles of Oggle, which looks the life and history of an imaginary town through the eyes of orphan boy Pakie.

He may not be the brightest boy on the block, but Pakie knows plenty about the history of his own town, from the Vikings and Walter Raleigh to the not-always Christian actions of the Christian Brothers.

He knows lots of secrets too, although whether his fellow residents want him to expose these secrets is another matter.

“I wanted to write about being a child in an orphanage in Ireland in the 1960s and 1970s, how neglected and badly socialised these children were,” says Peter.

That was his first idea for the play. The second one, which also found its way into the script, is the ‘second coming’ of Jesus. But this time it’s a completely powerless and disadvantaged Jesus, without the ability to work miracles.

“He is a person who is odd because of neglect but is someone who can generate love, so a Jesus-like character is present,” says Peter of Pakie.

The actor, who now lives in London, grew up in Youghal during the 1960s and ‘70s, so he is familiar with both the era and the place.

“Every boy of my age and generation used to think, ‘if there’s a second coming, am I going to be Jesus?’ he says with a laugh, “and this boy is the same.”

The initial production of The Chronicles of Oggle in 2013 was directed by Donal Gallagher of Asylum Productions, who has reprised his role this time out. It was funded by Cork County Council and the Everyman. Some of the action was based on events from Peter’s life and those of his friends, including incidents concerning the Christian Brothers.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

 

CITY TRIBUNE

Tunes in the Church returns with August concert series

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Tunes in the Church returns with August concert series

The Tunes in the Church concert series returns to Galway after a two-year break. The award-winning, series held in St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church, will run for the next two weeks, taking place on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights.

The concerts will feature some of Galway’s finest musicians, singers and dancers, with two musicians and a dancer performing each night. During the interval, there will be a short historical tour of St Nicholas’ Collegiate Church, which celebrated 700 years in existence in 2020.

Tunes in the Church began in 2010, set up by Kerry musician and Galway resident Cormac Begley, who wanted a way of presenting traditional music that was family-friendly and respected the tradition. It is an acoustic, authentic, personal and interactive representation of Irish music, song and dance.

Interaction between the audience and performers is central to the experience, Cormac explains, with relaxed, natural, conversation being a feature of all the concerts.

Tunes in the Church provides a respectful and family-friendly setting for the listener and creates a platform where leading exponents of traditional music can showcase their talents. For more information and to book go to www.tunesinthechurch.com

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CITY TRIBUNE

Magic of the musicals at Town Hall Theatre

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Cast members of Disney's The Little Mermaid, Declan J Gardiner (Sebastian) and Michael Cooney (Chef Louis), at a launch in the Connacht Hotel this week. Declan is also choreographer for the musical. PHOTO JOE O'SHAUGHNESSY.

A new stage adaptation of the popular Disney musical The Little Mermaid, based on the much-loved story by Hans Christian Andersen, will be presented at the city’s Town Hall Theatre from next Wednesday, August 10, to Sunday, August 10.

It’s from Twin Productions, Brian and Seán Power, who are delighted to be back staging a summer musical after an absence of more than two years.

Ariel (Aisling Carroll / Aoibhe Ryan) is a beautiful mermaid with a glorious voice who lives in an enchanted undersea realm with her six  mer-sisters and her father, King Triton (Darren Shine), ruler of this underwater kingdom. She should be happy, but this spirited, headstrong teenager wants what she can’t have – to live on dry land. When she falls in love with the handsome Prince Eric (Keith Hanley), Ariel becomes totally determined to gain land-legs. But the only way she can do this is by defying her furious father and bargaining with the sea witch, Ursula (Amy Hehir).

Trading her voice is the price Ariel must pay to grow legs and gain entry onto dry land. With the help of her little fish friend, Flounder (Cameron Heneghan), the seagull, Scuttle (Luke Dennigan) and officious court composer, the crab Sebastian (Declan J Gardiner), Ariel must wordlessly gain Prince Eric’s love within three days – or lose her soul to the witch.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

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Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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CITY TRIBUNE

Exhibitions and workshops make for crafty August

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Sandra King of Irish Fibre Crafters in Ardrahan.

Several events are taking place across County Galway for August Craft Month, which celebrates craft on the island of Ireland.

Local makers such as Catherine O’Connor, Sue Donnellan and Bernie Dignam are among the craft-workers taking part.

Bofin Weaves is the title of a free exhibition being held in the Inishbofin Community Centre this Sunday, August 7, featuring the work of Catherine O’Connor.

It will showcase handwoven items made on a rigid heddle loom. These looms and their accessories will also be on display, as will photographs of Inishbofin and information on the island which inspired Catherine’s crafts. There will also be a brief history of textile crafts on the island and Catherine will be available to answer questions.

Irish Fibre Crafters, the Square in Ardrahan is the venue for a show entitled Handwoven on the island…inspired by the island. Crafting with Irish Fibre runs from Tuesday, August 16, to Friday, August 26, and admission is free.

People can experience the crafts of hand-spinning, natural dyeing, weaving, needle-felting and wet-felting, with demonstrations by makers Sandra King and Sandra Marschall.

Crafts that are made using Irish wool and Irish alpaca fibres will be on show, and visitors will have a chance to try the craft of their choice.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

 

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