The Festival Theatre finished up on Sunday and I was sad to see it go. I did have a really great final weekend though. I saw 3 shows, a couple of panel discussions and talking theatre sessions and a couple of hours of The Magic If… My last Festival event on Sunday was The Game of You which I really liked. I found it clever and interesting and walked away feeling sad that I don’t have another Ontroerend Goed experience to look forward to this week.
I have seen more shows in this year’s festival and felt more engaged with it than I have in previous years. This is the first time I’ve volunteered which made me feel more involved and meant I saw more shows. And because I saw almost nothing in the Fringe I was more able for three weeks of theatre when the Theatre Festival rolled round. I was also more organised this year, I got the programme as soon as it became available, I picked out the shows I definitely didn’t want to miss and booked them as soon as the box-office opened.
I was able to be so organised because I was getting tweets from the Festival (@DubTheatreFest) reminding me what was going on. The twitter feed was also great throughout the festival – retweeting reactions to various shows, letting their followers know about ticket availability and special offers, etc. I saw photos of the set of John Gabriel Borkman on twitter before it even opened (though they failed to capture it’s magnificent splendour), I read people’s reactions to the Ontroerend Goed shows as they were walking out of Smock Alley, I knew who played the Dane. I found it really exciting to watch the Festival unfold on Twitter and I think they used the technology really well, in a way that I haven’t seen in Ireland before. I love twitter, I find it a great source of information and am delighted to see it being put to such good use. I am slowly building up a useful group of Irish tweeters who tell me things I want to know and I found a good few of them though the DubTheatreFest retweets.
I think Dublin Theatre Festival can be very happy and proud of themselves this week. It was a fantastic festival, loads of really interesting shows to see, and also a wonderfully international festival. Their twitter feed also linked to reviews from theatre critics who were thoroughly enjoying the Festival as well.
Roll on next year!