Culture questions: Sian Ni Mhuiri, Super Paua Productions
Sian Ni Mhuiri, Director of Super Paua Productions
At the moment, I'd say JM Synge – because of what he has taught me about the richness of common language. Synge is perhaps not the most fashionable answer, but I think all Irish writers today are indebted to him.
The best stage production you've ever seen?
The Passion by National Theatre Wales and Wildworks. Set in Port Talbot, Wales, it is a modernised, re-telling of the Easter story that lasts for three days. Despite being a committed atheist, I couldn't help but be blown away by such a large-scale feat of imagination.
The best production aimed at children that you've seen?
A small production called Cloudman by Ailie Cohen. You probably won't have seen it, unless you happened to be at Baboró last year. It is a gorgeous children's puppetry show about a woman who has spent her whole life searching for a little creature called a Cloudman – to say any more would ruin the magic!
Do you have a favourite gay-themed play?
Hedwig and the Angry Inch is one of my all time favourite plays. I first saw a production by Making Strange Theatre Company in a Speigeltent when I was only 14. It's about a transsexual rock star from communist East Berlin, and his search for love and self-acceptance. It's hilarious, incredibly moving, and the soundtrack is genius.
Strangest experience you've had on stage/behind the scenes?
I used to practice performance art so I've had so many strange experiences they could fill another article. They include naked dancing with 120 women and getting tattooed in front of a live audience. None of these things appear in my children's shows, I promise!
Best gig you've ever seen?
Probably the Pixies in the old Landsdowne Road, as a teenager. I can't remember them being particularly earth-shattering (they supposedly still hate each other, so chemistry was lacking), but it was their "only" reunion tour, and they meant so much to me then.
I pretty much never listen to the radio, which I would like to change in the future, and I don't actually own a TV, so current TV programming is a significant cultural blindspot.
SUPER PAUA'S AUNTY BEN (FOR AUDIENCES AGED 7+) WILL BE SHOWING AS PART OF THE 11TH ANNUAL INTERNATIONAL DUBLIN GAY THEATRE FESTIVAL IN THE TEACHERS' CLUB, PARNELL SQUARE, MAY 5, 10 AND 17. SEE WWW.SUPERPAUA.ORG