Monday 23 October 2017

Colin Murphy: How we found eager audience for Guaranteed nights of drama

President Michael D.Higgins and his wife Sabina at the opening of Guaranteed in Tallaght
President Michael D.Higgins and his wife Sabina at the opening of Guaranteed in Tallaght

Colin Murphy

A YEAR ago, I went to Fishamble Theatre Company and suggested I write a play about the bank guarantee for them. It would consist largely of anonymous men in suits talking about "shorting" and liquidity, I said. The set would consist of file boxes and a screen for showing powerpoint presentations. There would be no music, no comedy, no sex (no women), and no makey-uppy stuff. . . It wasn't an obvious sell.

On Tuesday, we finished a short, first run of 'Guaranteed!' We sold out. People were turned away. Each night, we had a discussion in the theatre afterwards. Usually, these discussions are for the die-hard theatre fans. But, every night, most of the audience stayed – and would have stayed long into the night, had we not had to let the theatres close.

That success, of course, wasn't purely our doing. We were helped by an extraordinary coincidence: on the day that we were opening a play that dramatised what was happening in Anglo (and elsewhere) in the days leading up to the guarantee, this newspaper released tapes that dramatised precisely the same thing.

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