Friday, February 23, 2018

Displays mark 88 years of Kilcullen Drama Group

Two display boards have been installed in the Kilcullen Heritage Centre to mark the plays performed by the Kilcullen Drama Group since it was founded in 1930, writes Brian Byrne.

In all, some 146 productions are recorded, of which 15 were performed in the 'Carlow Stables', a former coach and horses stopping point where Nicholastown Green is now.

"My Uncle Michael was in the first of those, the play 'Uncle Pat'," says Nessa Dunlea of Kilcullen Drama Group, who organised the displays. Other plays in that space included 'The Colleeen Bawn', 'Drama at Innis', and 'Grogan and the Ferrett'.

The first play in the New Town Hall in 1935 was 'Autumn Fire', and the production was the official opening of the facility. After a number of crisis periods and reincarnations, one for a long time as a cinema, the theatre was refurbished in 1996, and the Heritage Centre was added and the Volvo leather seats installed in 2000.

Some of the classic old and modern plays in the theatre down the decades included 'Shadow of a Gunman', 'Many Young Men of Twenty', 'The Last of the Red Hot Lovers', 'Da', 'The Beauty Queen of Leenane', and 'The Plough and the Stars'.

The research for the project was greatly helped by John Martin's booklet to mark the 50th anniversary of the Kilcullen Drama Group, Nessa says. The production of the displays was by The Signmaker, located in the Link Business Park.