All Ireland Confined Finals 2017: Chairman’s Welcome.

The Western Drama Festival is delighted to have the honour of hosting the All Ireland Confined Finals

2017 under the auspices of the Amateur Drama Council of Ireland.

This will be the third occasion in which our festival has hosted the Confined Finals. Previous occasions were in 1985 when Carrigallen Community Players were the winners with ‘The Wood Of The Whispering’ by M.J.Molloy and in 2002 Ennis Players with ‘The Beauty Queen Of Lennane’ by Martin McDonagh took the honours. Both groups have gone on to distinguish themselves on the Open Section of the annual Drama Festival circuit.

We are blessed in Tubbercurry to have such a fine tradition of amateur drama spanning many decades. It is little wonder then that the very first competitive Drama Festival in Ireland was held in St Brigids Hall in February / March 1944. Incredibly a total of 22 plays both 3Act and 1Act for both adults and children, not to mention character sketches were performed in just one week. The very first play in the festival was ‘Professor Tim’ by George Shields presented by The Tubbercurry Players. This tradition was officially recognised and rewarded by Co-Operation Ireland when The Western Drama Festival and Phoenix Players joint presentation in the All-Island Pride of Place Community Arts Initiative Category won the national completion outright in 2010.

We are delighted to have Imelda McDonagh from the Association of Drama Adjudicators (ADA) to adjudicate at the Festival. This will be Imelda’s second visit to Tubbercurry having adjudicated our One Act Drama Festival in November 2015.

We extend a very special welcome to the top nine groups who are nominated to the Finals having won many awards on the festival circuit, and to our patrons and visitors. To our many sponsors who have been so generous and without their support this event would not be possible.

Billy Kilgannon
Festival Chairman