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2018 News- Mark Smith AXIS Residency, Home Alone, and more…

mark ballymun

It’s been a busy start to 2018 for us here and Run of the Mill and we thought it high time we update you on the comings and goings!

Mark Smith, Artist in Residence, Axis Ballymun

We kicked off the year with some incredibly exciting news- our very own Mark Smith (known to many as ‘King Lear’) was successful in his application for the ‘Playground Residency’ at Axis Ballymun. Mark intends to use his residency  (Jan to July 2018)  to develop his practice in solo contemporary performance and will be working (in a fully paid capacity) alongside writer Shaun Dunne and myself (Director Aisling Byrne!)  to develop an autobiographical piece of work. Mark has already settled himself into the Axis and is on first name terms with most of the staff (especially the very lovely ladies in the cafe). We are so proud of him and thrilled to be supporting the development of a truly exciting piece of work with a very talented theatre artist.

ive a disability workshop

I’ve a Disability: GET ME OUT OF HERE! and the Kildare Leader Partnership

In between rehearsals for their upcoming production ‘Home Alone’ (more on this to follow) our Crossroads and Seasons group continue to make waves with their 2016 production ‘I’ve A Disability: Get Me Out of Here!‘ a politically charged piece of theatre exploring the barriers to inclusion faced by people with a disability in our communities. Across February, the group facilitated a workshop for the Kildare Leader Partnership for 25 participants (including local county Councillors) based upon the themes of the play and performed also for the Celbridge Access Group to highlight access issues in our community. This is socially engaged theatre at its best; making waves with the people in power! We loom forward to further opportunities to perform this piece of work across our wider community.

The group are also set to perform their new play Home Alone, in June of this year so watch this space for details. Home Alone is a newly devised play for anyone who ever knew what it was like to crave just a bit of independence….

Monday night ensemble and other projects…

mill monday

Our Monday night ensemble (picture above, John Monaghan, David Cahill and David Kelly) are busy working towards their new piece These Modern Times, a silent mimed production inspired by the films of Charlie Chaplin. The piece will be performed later in the year at a ‘red carpet’ event. Watch this space!

Meanwhile, our Pathways group are working away on a very exciting project (we can’t say much for now but stay tuned!) whilst our Griffin Rath group are preparing a very special multi-sensory story sharing for their families and friends this March. Our Choices group are developing some new ideas and let’s just say they are feeling very ‘filmic!’….The newly formed Maynooth Drama Club kicked off in January and is running every Tuesday, whilst our Weds morning ‘Horizons’ group (on a break since last year) are hoping to return to the Mill Community Centre after the Easter Break on April 11th.

That’s enough to be getting on with for now I reckon! Stay tuned and we look forward to welcoming you into the audience later this year 🙂

Grease is the Word…

grease poster.pngO

Oh how we love a good musical at  Run of the Mill Theatre!

Come and join us at The Rydell Day Service for this year’s big community production at The Celbridge GAA Club on May 31st 2017 at 8pm and we promise to have you dancing in the aisles.

Tickets are a steal at 7euro and can be reserved by emailing runofthemilltheatre@gmail.com or purchased from reception at The Mill Community Centre.

Directed by: Aisling Byrne

Performed by our Monday Night Ensemble:

Bronagh O’ Grady, David Brophy, David Kelly, David Cahill, David Uzell, Claudia Freeman, Vanessa Walsh, Yvonne Killick, Ciara Rogers, Florina Conroy, Sastri Boodasingh, John Monaghan, Nicky Stephenson, Papi Herterich, Paddy Dennigan and Kieran O Reilly

 

Downtown the Movie

The global release we have all been waiting for!

Our brilliant silent movie made with the support of Kildare County Council and Alan Thompson Videography is now online and you can watch it here:.

Directed by Aisling Byrne and starring Mary Gilton, Noel O’ Dwyer, Johnny Murphy, Ciaran Flynn, Brendan Moran,  Brian Malone, Tommy Cunningham, John Monaghan, Niall Cunningham and Roy Priest (the participants of Run of the Mill’s Horizons Drama Group) the movie was conceived and devised by the participants and filmed across the community of Celbridge in Summer 2016. Give it a watch!

 

 

 

Hot off the Press…

 

Irish Times Coverage, Reason in Madness by  Sara Keating, Nov 2016

Director Aisling and performer Mark Smith sat down with the Irish Times last week to talk about the project, and you can read all about it on the Irish Times online:

http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/stage/shakespeare-meets-george-orwell-meets-the-kardashians-1.2850720

Reason in Madness Review by Shakespeare in Ireland:

https://shakespeareinireland.wordpress.com/2016/12/06/review-reason-in-madness-draoicht-theatre/

Reason in Madness. Review by Jerome Corby 27th Nov 2016

There can be few things more rewarding in life than delivering a night of theatre that captivates an audience as fully as Run of The Mill Theatre did tonight. A packed house was witness to a superb reworking of the great tragedy of King Lear. I dare say Shakespeare would have been proud of such a production. Arts and theatre makers with intellectual disabilities from the St. John of God Services in Dublin and North Kildare realised an ambitious undertaking beautifully.

In a devised production, which this accomplished ensemble has worked over the past year, the themes of aging, dementia and vulnerability get a sensitive treatment worthy of the medieval tale and its modern setting. A minimal set allows great use of mime, light and sound to create the eerie sense of foreboding in the story.

But the performances are what bring the whole production to life.
On entry, we are treated to a view of the court anticipating the arrival of the king with trepidation. On his arrival, Lear (Mark Smith in a commanding performance) is clearly unhappy and tired of his monarchy, but wants to make sure he hands his kingdom over to the daughter who loves him most.

Cue Goneril (Jane Ryan) and Regan (Ella-Jane Moore) who make great showings of their love for the king, including some superb dancing which had the audience (and the king) in thrall. A lovely understated performance by Michelle Brennan as Cordelia, unwilling to lie to him for her own gain, suitably enrages the easily-deceived father and she is disowned – she marries the King of France, played exuberantly by Neil Coffey.

Kent (the excellent Wesley Fairbrother), faithful servant to the king, is banished from the kingdom when he tries to alert Lear to his unfair treatment of Cordelia, but returns in the disguise of Caius to support the monarch when he discovers the duplicity of his two older daughters. Bad guy Edmund is ably played by John Egan.

The old king’s therapy sessions with the psychologist (played by Kate Bauer who provides splendid costume and assists the performers discreetly and expertly throughout) bring some excellent comedic moments. Smith and his colleagues know how to work an audience, and they do so regularly.

The supporting cast, in particular the demons, bring a menacing quality to the nightmare scenes, especially later on, when Lear descends into madness. Fine stage visuals (by Sean Cunningham) help to generate the desired effects here.

An inspired production, deftly directed by Aisling Byrne, designed by Ciaran O’Melia, with a nuanced text by Oonagh Murphy, and sound by Susie Birmingham with Ellen Gorman and an effective team stage-managing, ensures a thoroughly entertaining spectacle for everyone.

Everyone should see this talented group in the first-rate surroundings of Draíocht, so if you can beg, borrow or steal a ticket for the last performance Wednesday 30th – well, I’m not advising anyone to steal a ticket…

 

 

 

 

Hurry… Reason in Madness EARLYBIRD SPECIAL!

Lear is not having a good week. A storm is brewing and he’s running with the wolves. He’s old, he’s cold and his daughters aren’t talking to him. You can’t rule the world, if you can’t remember where your shoes are. It seems in this kingdom when you’re old and grey, suddenly, you’re in the way.

Rehearsals are steaming ahead for Run of the Mill’s biggest performance of the year, Reason in Madness (a devised reworking of King Lear) in collaboration with Pathways Day Programme and supported by the Arts Council of Ireland to be performed at the Draiocht Blanchardstown on November 29th and 30th.

We’re teaming up with our great friends at Draiocht to offer an earlybird special of 10euros per ticket if you book before September 9th. So what are you waiting for?  Follow the link and get booking 🙂

The Story of Sean : Multisensory storytelling at Avoca Drama Group

 

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We settled into summer at Run of the Mill Theatre with a little bit of storytelling about the 1916 Rising in this centenary year. Our Avoca drama group meets every Tuesday afternoon at Avoca Day Programme (St John of Gods Community Services Liffey Region) and we focus on supporting our participants towards immersive, experiential, multi sensory engagement with dramatic pretexts and stories.

What does that mean I hear you ask! Well it means we explore stories in really fun ways with lots of rhyme, music, water sprayers, smells, sounds, bubbles, fabrics, props and much more…

This year we took on our most exciting story, ‘The Story of Sean’ based upon Joe Duffy’s retelling of the story of young Sean Healy, a 14 year old soldier with Fianna Eireann who lost his life in the Easter Rising. Through this story we learned about tenement life, we helped Sean’s Mammy look after the house, we attended secret meetings, we emptied noisy slop buckets, we learned old Dublin skipping rhymes, we danced to Irish music, we build barricades, and even held guns

In July we decided to invite some of our family and friends to share this story with us and we had a wonderful afternoon followed cake and of course most importantly tea!

Pictured above are Seamus Granger, Christopher Johnson, Patrick O’ Malley, David McDonnell and Eddie Gill who participated in the performance.

Logos, Lear and GET ME OUT OF HERE!

 

In the words of CAROUSEL June was bustin’ out all over at Run of the Mill, it’s hard to know where to begin…

Crossroads and Seasons presented I’ve a Disability Get Me Out of Here to a packed audience at The Slip Hall in Celbridge on June 23rd. The feedback was fantastic and the atmosphere was electric. The conversation to “take back our nation” was begun and its safe to say it caused a stir! The overwheming feedback was: Everyone. Needs. To. See. This.

And we agree… Plans to develop the piece for a bigger venue are already afoot.

Meanwhile over at our Pathways training programme preparations for what is shaping to be THE definitive reworking of King Lear (seriously, we think even Shakespeare is impressed right now), Reason in Madness are continuing. We had a photoshoot on Friday last with the very talented Vincent Lillis and even though Mark Smith had to cover his face in mud, we think you’ll agree it was worth it when you see the amazing shots. We are bursting to share them! But we can’t …yet…Watch this space.

We also decided it was time to get ourselves a new look logo and enlisted the help of the very talented Paperbag Animator (also known as Sean Cunningham) to help us create something truly unique and original. What do you think of the end result?

In other news, our main ensemble are working hard on Monday evenings to prepare for Culture Night in Sept, our youth theatre finished out the year with a very theatrical ‘Summer Holiday’, Horizons Group continued filming around the town and we drank several, several cups of tea. And that is only SOME of the fun we’ve been up to.

I think we need another cup of tea!

 

Dates for your Diary!

It’s a busy week @ Run of the Mill as we countdown to our performance of I’ve a Disability: Get Me Out of Here next Thursday at the Slip Hall in Celbridge. Filming continues on our community film project Downtown! supported by Kildare County Council. We are working hard on developing Reason in Madness at Pathways Day  Programme and enjoyed a visit from our dramaturg Oonagh Murphy on Friday who gave us lots of creative food for thought. Meanwhile our Monday night ensemble are practicing in earnest for their slot on Culture Night, where they will perform a slot as part of The Mill Community Centre variety show. It’s all go to say the least!

Here are some dates to keep in mind:

Thursday June 23rd 2016:Crossroads and Seasons present: I’ve a Disability: Get Me Out of Here, Slip Hall Celbridge, 730pm

Saturday 17th Sept 2016: The Mill Harvest Festival Variety Show, Kildare Culture Night 2016, Run of the Mill perform excerpts from their adaptation of Grease! to be developed in 2017.

November 29th & 30th 2016 Reason in Madness presented by Pathways Day Programme, Draiocht Blanchardstown, 8pm nightly.

December 15th 2016 The Plough and the Stars, presented by Choices Day  Programme, Celbridge Manor Hotel as part of Kildare County Councils 1916 Commemorations.

Are you coming?

DOWNTOWN! An adventure in film.

Ciaran Filming

More good news at Run of the Mill as we recently secured a grant from the Kildare County Council arts service to create a short silent movie in collaboration with our drama group at Horizons Day Service (St. John  of Gods Liffey Region).

The group have spent many months devising the piece, inspired by the commedia characters of the Silent Movie era, and also the work of the fantastic artists at the Ridgepool Training Centre & Scannan Technologies in Co. Mayo who led by visual artist Aideen Barry created an incredible piece Silent Moves that we had the opportunity to see and be inspired by in the IFI last Winter.

We decided to create our own short film and populate it with our own unique characters. Filming has begun with the support of video artist Alan Thompson and we are thoroughly enjoying the opportunity to don costumes in our local community (we’ve even had a few cameos already! And not just the Liffey ducks…) Next week we will be enlisting the help of The Village Inn in Celbridge and The Academy Barber to get some much needed shots (camera shots we mean 🙂 We can’t wait for you all to see the finished product.