Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Community Theatre – Petty Court Sessions
Dunshaughlin Harvest Festival is fast approaching but the buzz already started a couple of months ago when Oulala Productions were approached by the festival committee: they wanted to bring the old courthouse back to life and give festival-goers a taste of the Petty Sessions as they used to be, back in the 1800s.
A period piece, site-specific, in its original setting, involving research, writing, costumes and enthusiastic performers from the community... what else could we ask for?
We got to work and immersed ourselves in the dark but fascinating times of the Famine, of Meath and its colourful characters, of quirky cases, moving human stories and how the good people of Dunshaughlin may have travelled to escape the hunger. In our writing, we could not ignore the political background of the times and had to include a very well-know English gentleman who changed the fate of many Irish children. We could not leave out the (in)famous Workhouse either... which, from the staff or the inmates, caused the most shenanigans? I'll say no more! Just maybe that we are thrilled to be part of this wonderful project; how much we have learnt so far and laughed and cried... and that's before the rehearsals even started!
Is it a coincidence that our last stage production was set in a courthouse, too? Maybe the Law likes us... let's hope it will last and that the only time we will have to stand in front of a Judge again, will be to adjust his wig and help him with his lines!
See you all on the 23rd, 24th and 25th of September in Dunshaughlin's Courthouse.