Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival 2010

The Dublin Theatre Festival launched it’s 2010 programme today, though you can’t book tickets until August 18th, unless you are a friend of the Festival.

It looks like a good programme though – a nice mix of Irish and international shows. Every time I visit the website, I see new things that I want to go and see. I will probably go into the Festival office tomorrow and pick up a programme. Although the website is great, I like being able to flick through the book, see what images catch my eye, fold down the pages of things that I definitely don’t want to miss.

Some things that have already caught my eye are Enron – I have heard so many good things about this show, The Author – because Tim Crouch’s plays are generally strange and interesting, 565+ – I saw a version of this at Project Brand New last year and really liked it. I also really liked Una McKevitt’s last show Victor & Gord, CIRCA – even though I’m not really into movement based piece, this looks interesting.

There are lots of other things that sound interesting and exciting but Theatre Festival shows are expensive and I won’t be able to afford all the things that I would like to see. It’s worth booking early to get the cheap(er) seats, especially for things in the Project where the seating is unallocated and the different prices are based purely on a first come, first served basis.

Sneak peak at the Fringe

The full Fringe programme won’t be released until August 18 but there are a few highlights listed in the Project’s latest programme. Along with Trilogy, I am also looking forward to this:

As you are now, so once were we
Why haven’t you read Ulysses? The most important Irish work of the last century is also the most unknown. Why? Spirit of the Fringe 2009 award winner The Company is back to ask you who you think you are, where you think you belong and to re-write one of the most relevant Irish literary works in light of the ways we now communicate with each other. This year The Company rediscovers what it means to be Irish.

The Company had the infuriating and fascinating Who is Fergal Kilpatrick? in last year’s Fringe and I am very interested to see their take on Ulysses. It’s a big, fat book, and an ambitious project to take on, but one with huge scope.

I read Ulysses about ten years ago. (I was going through a Classics phase.) It took me months but I was determined to finish it. I started reading it shortly after I moved to Dublin for the first time, and I think that really helped me to connect with the book. When my aunt drove me back to Dun Laoghaire on a Sunday evening, we would pass the Martello towers at Sandycove. I would see The Morning Star hotel on Amiens Street when I got the train from Connelly and was amazed that it was still there. It made the book seem more real. I will be interested to see what The Company do with it.

Sorcha Kelly’s My Life in Dresses is another Fringe show that I will be looking out for. It was part of the last Project Brand New (fourth one down) and I’m interested to see how the show will develop from that work-in-progress. I’ve also been keeping up-to-date with her blog for the project. Her dresses have been up to all sorts of adventures!

I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on the full programme and finding out what other treats the Fringe has in store!

Would you like to dance naked on stage as part of the Fringe Festival?

A couple of weeks the Fringe Festival put out a call for women who would be like to participate in a show called ‘Trilogy’. The show is about modern-day feminism and was created by a woman called Nic Green.

From the Fringe website:
“Women of all ages, backgrounds, shapes, sizes, levels of fitness and ability are sought to perform naked in an ensemble dance celebrating the female form, as part of Nic Green’s extraordinary, multi award winning show Trilogy during this year’s ABSOLUT Fringe.

A show in three parts, Trilogy is a celebratory venture into modern-day feminism and examines and interrogates the joys and complexities of being a woman today.”

I think it sounds like a really interesting experience and have already signed up! Even though it may interfere with volunteering for the festival, I think it would be worth it! In the Guardian, Lynn Gardner describes Trilogy (at the Edinburgh fringe festival last year) as angry, joyous, heartfelt, rigorous and radiant with hope. That’s my kind of show!

It looks like it would be a fairly big commitment – evening rehearsals are from September 18th to 21st and then performances will take place from September 22nd to 25th – but you can come along to the first information evening (where everybody keeps their clothes on!) and see how you feel about it. Nic Green says on the website above; “If you want to come to the first session (which we will do fully clothed!) and decide you don’t want to come back that is of course absolutely fine and we will fully understand. However, if you feel at all interested I would urge you to come along and see what you think and how you feel.”

Another Guardian article about the show in Edinburgh talks to the volunteers who took part and they are all very positive about the experience. And from my own experience, I can tell you that the Fringe knows how to look after its volunteers!

If you’re interested in taking part, or just finding out more, contact Kate at kate@fringefest.com and maybe I’ll see you there!

Volunteer for the Dublin Theatre Festival

The Ulster Bank Dublin Theatre Festival has put out a call for volunteers for this year’s festival. I’ve blogged enthusiastically about my experience volunteering for the Fringe Festival over the last two years but I haven’t actually worked for the Theatre Festival.

Last year I applied to be a volunteer and even went to the information evening but I didn’t make the final cut. The Theatre Festival don’t use as many volunteers as the Fringe and they get a lot of applicants, especially with so many people unemployed at the moment so they can afford to be fussy. I was unavailable for a lot of the festival due to weekends away and other plans so I wasn’t surprised that I didn’t get any shifts.

I have applied again this year, mostly for the free tickets because Theatre Festival shows can be expensive, but I also know that I would get a lot out of the experience.

If you are interested, the application form can be downloaded here.