Finale of inaugural Clare Drama Radio Festival

Finale of inaugural Clare Drama Radio Festival

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Tonight, Easter Sunday, on Scariff Bay Community Radio, the Inaugural Clare Drama Radio Play Festival comes to a close.

Eleven nights of the best of Irish drama and its groups, performing twenty plays. Many of the plays were written especially for our innovative radio play festival by authors who were delighted to share their writing.

The Board of Scariff Bay Community Radio were delighted to partner with The Clare Drama Festival and present this feast of amateur drama during the lean times caused by the Covid Pandemic. The radio play festival was perfect “lockdown’ entertainment for the thousands of listeners from all over the World who tuned in on Saturdays and Sundays.

Both Scariff Bay Community Radio and The Clare Drama Festival saw the potential benefits for everyone involved that the festival would bring. The drama groups, writers, directors and actors had no opportunity to perform this year as all festivals on the annual circuit had been cancelled and as venues were shuttered the fans of amateur drama had nowhere to go to see a play being performed. By stepping in to the vacuum for the amateur drama scene, caused by Covid, these two far sighted organisations, Scariff Bay Community Radio and The Clare Drama Festival, breathed life back into the silent scene with the Inaugural Clare Drama Radio Play Festival.

Tom Hanley PRO of The Clare Drama Festival “We thought that we might get seven or eight groups to enter, but I’m dizzy with excitement that twenty groups entered and all twenty groups sent in plays to broadcast”.

Mary Egan, PRO of Doonbeg Drama in West Clare who directed a play for the festival. “I thought that with the Level 5 Lockdown it would be impossible to record a play, but, utilising Zoom, WhatsApp and even voice messages and texts, I was able to direct the play and our sound engineer, Ken Blowers, successfully recorded the cast, and edited our play by Liam Howard- Where is this Malabar”.

Presented by Tom Hanley PRO Clare Drama Festival and Eoin O’Hagan PRO Scariff Bay Community Radio, the Inaugural Clare Drama Radio Play Festival was truly an “All Ireland Festival” with twenty entries from the four provinces of Ireland. Broadcasting on FM locally and Worldwide via the players on the website scariffbayradio.com. Lovers of drama tuned in from the four corners of Ireland as well as from Anchorage, Athens, from San Francisco, Seattle, Saipan and Sydney, from London, Paris and Rome and all points in between. You can also listen back to the plays via the link to the podcasts on scariffbayradio.com.

With professional adjudication by Paul Brennan ADA, the Inaugural Clare Drama Radio Play Festival has also had a competitive part to it and the audiences, every night, stayed till the end of the show to hear Paul’s adjudication of the performances. The Drama groups whose plays were up for adjudication, said in messages that they really appreciated Pauls fair and in-depth critique of their work.

The Inaugural Clare Drama Festival deeply appreciate our sponsors: Derg Credit Union, Clare County Council and the Clare Arts Office. We are grateful for the support of The Community Radio Association of Ireland (CRAOL), The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI), The Association of Drama Adjudicators ADA, The Amateur Drama Council of Ireland (ADCI) and especially for the unwavering support and promotion of the festival by Joanne Keane and the Drama League of Ireland (DLI).

The Board of Scariff Bay Community Radio and Organising Committee of the Clare Drama Festival backed the festivals organisers and we are truly grateful to them. But most importantly we want to thank the twenty drama groups who entered and also the listeners for tuning in.

Tune in for the last two plays on Saturday night from 8pm, when we will also run a competition for the listeners, the winner of which will be announced at the live award ceremony on Scariff Bay Community Radio on Sunday night from 8pm.

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