Carrigallen’s Cornmill Theatre Company are one of seven amateur drama groups to star in a new RTE series ‘Simply Am- Dram’.
The first episode of the six part series aired last night, April 16 on RTE One (Check out the RTE Player if you missed it!)
Simply Am-Dram is a brand new television series which offers an insight into seven very different groups capturing the essence of the unique place the amateur drama movement holds within most Irish communities. From the farmer to the bank employee, the housewife to the aspiring young actor – all share a commonality: a passion to tread the boards…regardless of how they creak!
Outside of the GAA and the Church, the amateur drama movement is the largest membership organisation in the country. And the All-Ireland Festival, held in Athlone every year, ranks with its GAA equivalents for the fervour and pride of contestants and their communities.
Filmed over nine months in the run up to the 2012 competition, Simply Am-Dram follows seven amateur drama groups including the Cornmill Theatre Company, in their bid to qualify for the annual finals, which were held in May last year. Last year, The Cornmill Theatre produced ‘The Seafarer’ by Conor McPherson, it was directed by Sean McIntyre. The play performed locally in the drama circuit and in local venues around the region. The cast included: Brian O’Reilly, Raymond Hackett, Ronan W|ard, Stephen McIntyre and Killian McGuinness.
The fiercely competitive dimension of the groups show the double-lives of the featured characters as they go about their daily routines and witness the lengths to which they will go to be crowned All Ireland Champions.
Filmed in an observational documentary style, from the casting sessions to opening night and on to the finals themselves, the mix of drama groups reflects a diverse range of ensembles that vary in scale and experience. From reigning champions Kilmeen Drama Group from West Cork, to rookies Ballyshannon Drama Group, this is the real pride of the parish: a wet winter’s worth of rehearsals, fluffed lines and acclaim or disappointment. See the cheers, jeers and rivalry as the members of the various groups sweat it out with a community’s expectations riding on them.
Simply Am-Dram offers an insight to seven very different groups capturing the essence of the unique place the amateur drama movement holds within most Irish communities. From the farmer to the bank employee, the housewife to the aspiring young actor – all share a commonality: a passion to tread the boards…regardless of how they creak!
The first episode aired last night at 7pm and begin in September 2011 as amateur drama groups are nailing down their cast for the forthcoming productions. The Cornmill Theatre Company from Leitrim were introduced.
The next episode will air on RTE One on Tuesday, April 23 at 7pm.