Tuesday 21 November 2017

Packed hall reflects on half century of top entertainment

Kilrush Drama Group golden anniversay celebration night at, Saint Brigids Hall; Goodwin Furlong.
Kilrush Drama Group golden anniversay celebration night at, Saint Brigids Hall; Goodwin Furlong.

Fintan Lambe

FIFTY years of memorable drama in Kilrush have been preserved for posterity in a new book which was launched at a special celebration night in St. Brigid's Hall, Carnew.

Founder member of the group Michael Byrne, who has directed most of the group's 64 plays over the past five decades, recorded his personal memories of each play in the book. It also contains some 20 other articles from other people who were involved in the group down through the years.

The book was put together by Eamonn Doran, who also contributed most of the photographs for the publication. It also features the name of every actor who performed in each of the 64 plays, and recounts details of the various festivals and awards the group has picked up.

Almost 200 people were in attendance at the celebratory evening in the newly refurbished hall, and long time member of the group, PJ Arthur, a veteran of 36 of the group's productions, acted as MC for the proceedings.

Kilrush Drama Group Chairperson Ger Byrne was delighted to welcome everyone there on the evening, especially those who were returning on the night for the reunion. In a hilarious speech, he congratulated all involved in keeping the group so strong over the years, and thanked everyone involved in putting the book together.

Those involved in planning, compiling, typing and proofing, included Eamonn Doran, Lorna Doran, PJ Arthur, Lar Duffy, Cathy Tighe, Tommy Kavanagh, Mary Doran, Mary Blake and Ellie Condren.

Representing the Amateur Dramatic Council of Ireland was Michael Stafford, who recalled how well the group has done on the Festival Circuit over the years, being pipped at the post several times for the top All Ireland title.

President of the Drama Group was Fr. Joe Power, Kilrush PP, who said the group had done the community proud over the years, and had afforded a great opportunity to people, young and old, to display their talents both on the stage and behind the scenes.

All speakers talked about how much enjoyment the group gave to the community over the years.

The undoubted star of the show, as ever, was Michael Byrne, who received a spontaneous standing ovation when he stood up to speak, with all the speakers recognising his invaluable contribution to the group for the past 50 years, and they wished him, and the group, continued success.

Gorey Guardian

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