Western Drama Festival, March 2022

Synopsis of Plays

Saturday 5th March. Wexford Drama Group, Co. Wexford.
"A Lie of the Mind" by Sam Shepard

This play involves two desperate families connected by the marriage of the son of one (Jake) to the daughter of the other (Beth). Beth is being tended by her parents (Baylor and Meg) following a beating from Jake. Jake sends his brother, Frankie to check on Beth but the tensions and enmities that motivate the two families grow increasingly disturbing and dangerous. Please note this play has an adult theme.

Sunday 6th March. Glenamaddy Players, Co. Galway
"The Cripple of Inishman" by Martin McDonagh

Set on a remote island off the West of Ireland in 1934.  The Cripple of Inishmaan is a strange comic tale in the great tradition of Irish storytelling.  As word arrives on Inishmaan that the Hollywood Director, Robert O’Flaherty is coming to the neighbouring Island of Inishmore to film Man of Aran, the one person who wants to be in the film more than anybody is young Cripple Billy, if only to break away from the bitter tedium of his daily life.

Monday 7th March. Clann Machua Drama Group, Kiltimagh, Co. Mayo.
"Sive" by John B Keane

Sive is a young and beautiful orphan who lives with her uncle Mike, his wife Mena and his mother Nanna. A local matchmaker, Thomasheen Sean Rua, wants Sive to marry an old man called Sean Dóta. Thomasheen convinces Mike and Mena to organise the marriage. They will receive a sum of two hundred pounds as soon as she marries him. However, Sive is in love with a young man, Liam Scuab. But Liam is not suitable and is refused permission to marry Sive. Sive is distraught but is forced to do the will of her uncle and his bitter wife. Faced with an unthinkable future she takes the only choice left to her.

Tuesday 8th March. Ballyshannon Drama Group, Co. Donegal.
"All My Sons" by Arthur Millar

Joe Keller, the patriarch in All My Sons, desperately wants to secure and maintain the financial security and legacy he spent so many years building, ready to hand it down to his surviving son Chris. At the same time, Joe’s wife Kate is still waiting for their eldest son Larry to return from war, determined that he is alive and will marry the former girl-next-door, Ann - the daughter of Joe’s former business partner who is sitting in prison, punished for Joe’s crimes. To complicate this family drama, Chris and Ann are in love and want to get married. In All My Sons, Arthur Miller creates a post-war American family in a tragic downfall of lies, greed, love, and loss, and demands its audience examine their own social responsibilities to all the sons of American wars.

Wednesday 9th March. Phoenix Players, Tubbercurry, Co. Sligo.
"The Communication Cord" by Brian Friel

Tim, a junior linguistics Lecturer, persuaded by his barrister friend Jack, agrees to a scheme to borrow Jack’s ancestral Donegal cottage for an hour in an effort to impress Senator Donovan, father of his intended sweetheart Susan.  The scheme goes horribly and hilariously awry as other unexpected characters enter the fray including a former girlfriend, a wealthy German, a French Paramour and the local Busybody.  Even the cottage itself becomes a character in this classic Brian Friel farce. 

Thursday 10th March. The Ray Leonard Players, Claremorris, Co. Mayo.
"The Beauty Queen of Leenane" by Martin McDonnagh

Set in the mountains of Connemara, the play centres around Maureen Folan, a plain and lonely woman in her early 40s, and Mag, her manipulative, aging mother.  The two share a turbulent and unhealthy existence.  Mag’s interference in Maureen’s first and potentially last romantic relationship sets in motion a chain of events that are as tragically funny as they are horrific.

Friday 11th March. Butt Drama Circle, Ballybofey, Co. Donegal.
"An Incident with Dave Cotter" by Shaun Byrne

Set around the Events of Bloody Sunday, the 50-year anniversary of which fell on 30th January 2022, the play explores the effects of that day on two people as, years later, a relative of one of the victims confronts a soldier involved. Accusations, anger, guilt, lies and blame follow.

Saturday 12th March. Brideview Drama Group, Co. Waterford.
"The Beauty Queen of Leenane" by Martin McDonagh

The Beauty Queen of Leenane tells the story of Maureen Folan, a lonely woman in her early forties, and Mag her manipulative mother. Mag’s interference in her daughters’ first and possibly final chance of a loving relationship sets in motion a chain of events that are as tragically funny as they are sad.