Written by 3:34 pm Devious News

The Assistant Director’s Cut

A blog as written by one of our new recruits, our assistant director in training Eleanor Walsh:

I can vividly remember on the first night of Scratcher, when the play ended, and the curtain call was over, and the lights came up, hearing a little voice in my head saying ‘Oh… hell…’ very, very quietly. Really though, I needn’t have worried.

I’m Eleanor, and I’m the assistant director of Shifting. Pleased to meet you.

Paddy Dunne, John Kennedy, John Morton, Eleanor Walsh, Ken McGuire

I’ve never worked on a play from a directing or behind-the-scenes point of view, only as an actor with Kilkenny Youth Theatre (Barnstorm Theatre Company), so I am finding this very interesting.

Jesus, ‘interesting’. I’m ridiculously excited. Yes, RIDICULOUSLY.

I’m the youngest person working on the play, but I don’t mind. In fact, I enjoy it. I’ve always enjoyed it when I am, and it happens a lot. For me, it means I learn more and it encourages me to work harder. Also, it’s nice to be part of Devious Theatre’s ‘youth-nurturing policy’, end quote. The charming people at Devious have been very welcoming and generous with their time and in letting me assistant direct this play, and I hope I’ll get to work with them again in the future.

Shifting is set in present day Kilkenny, which coming from a KYT perspective is quite refreshing. So far, all the productions I’ve been involved with have been from British writers about rape, or anorexia, or vampires, or homosexuality, etc. These have all been brilliantly written plays and a delight to perform, but it’s nice to do something, well, a little lighter in comparison, even though Shifting does have it’s poignant and emotional bits. (Oh yes it does. Brace yourselves. The cast is brilliant at doing that sort of thing – Sorry, I mean ACTING – and you might need to bring a pillow or something to clutch.) Also, even though I’ve always wanted to do a play set in Kilkenny, I don’t get half the references Mr Kennedy’s written in. I am ashamed.

The lovely cast is lovely, and it’s great to be working with such a talented bunch. It’s sweet to see how well they get on together, whether rehearsing or not. They’re all very nice too. Which, of course, is the most important thing. Apart from their performances, and availability. Oooh, availability. But still. This probably/hopefully/better not be their last appearances with Devious Theatre.

We don’t have strobe lighting, or guns, or an orderly queue, or silly string. But we’ve got a magic beeping door that might not beep on the night, and duvets, and a cake, and condoms that are slowly disappearing from the Arts Office. (Tut tut tut.)

Am I nervous? Course I am. There’s only two weeks left, our time is short. But I’m confident that we’ll get everything done, and that we’ll offer people a hilarious, moving, and bloody brilliant play. Hopefully.
But hey, if this theatre thing was easy, it’d be called hurling, wouldn’t it?

Eleanor Walsh
Assistant Director – Shifting
Shifting opens on April 18th and runs until April 23rd in No. 76 John Street, Kilkenny. Tickets can be bought at the venue or booked on 056 – 7794138.

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