The Big Wall at Sligo Courthouse & Sligo Gaol a great success
The Hawk’s Well Theatre’s original production ‘The Big Wall’ at Sligo Courthouse and Sligo Gaol was a great success. Written by theatre artist in residence at the Hawk’s Well, Bob Kelly, this unique, immersive piece of theatre at Sligo Courthouse and Sligo Gaol ran from Thursday 26th to Monday 30th of May with 24 sold out performances and over 500 people coming to see the show. Audience sizes were limited to ensure an intimate and unique experience. Each audience was brought on a journey that immersed them in aspects of Sligo life at the turn of the last century. Beginning in the courthouse, the audience was brought on a journey through a Sligo of the past, finally arriving at Sligo Gaol or 'The Big Wall' as it was known. The immersive nature of this piece of theatre brought the audience that bit closer to life in Sligo in 1916.
This ambitious, new performance project was supported by Sligo County Council & Ireland 2016 and marked the 100th anniversary of the 1916 rising and was 9 months in the making. The project was also supported by local businesses including Nathaniel Lacy, Good 4U, Mullaneys Solicitors, Callan Tansey, etb, the Sligo Park Hotel and Strathroy.
Feedback was fantastic and the Hawk’s Well Theatre would like to thank all who helped to make this production and to extend a special thanks to the staff at Sligo County Council & Sligo Courthouse who made everyone in the production feel so welcome:
Big congrats to @HawksWellSligo on fantastic production "The Big Wall". Brilliantly written and acted. Very thought provoking. Go see it!
Attended #thebigwall @HawksWellSligo last night. One of the most amazing productions I've ever been to. Highly recommended. Very moving
This is like nothing you've ever seen before! An original Hawk's Well Theatre production by Bob Kelly. #TheBigWall
Really enjoyed The Big Wall... Imaginative & original, stunning locations. An incredible experience - well done to all!
The production featured a cast of 6 professional actors who were joined by a local cast from Sligo Youth Theatre and a cast of 28 local actors. In total there were over 70 people involved including cast and crew.
The professional cast included Miriam Needham, Julie Sharkey, Bryan Quinn, Clare Monnelly, Ciarán McCauley and Margaret Kilcoyne. Sligo actor Ciarán McAuley has been a core member of Blue Raincoat Theatre since 1991 and has recently graduated with an MA in Drama and Performance from UCD. Margaret Kilcoyne is also from Sligo. She has an MA in Acting from East 15 drama school and has worked with immersive theatre groups such as Punchdrunk in London. Miriam Needham from Leitrim is a graduate of the Lecoq school in Paris and her passion lies in physical theatre and devising. Her next project ‘Pinhole’ debuts at the Moving Bodies festival in Dublin at the end of June. Julie Sharkey is from Ballaghaderren in County Roscommon and is a graduate of the Gaiety School of Acting. Sligo audiences will remember her from Nomad Theatre’s production ‘The Far Off Hills’ directed by Mikel Murfi which premiered at the Hawk’s Well in 2014 before touring the country. Bryan Quinn has performed at the Cairde festival in the Horsebox Theatre and has worked with The Abbey, The Rubberbandits, David O’Doherty and Clowns without Borders. Clare Monnelly is known to audiences from her role in Moone Boy. Clare trained at the Gaiety School of Acting. Theatre work includes ‘Ride on’ with Livin Dred, and ‘Alone it Stands’ with Verdant Productions.
An accompanying audio exhibition at the Hawk's Well, entitled 'Sligo Stories', is currently on display at the Hawk’s Well and this features memories from Sligo residents of the war period.Sligo Stories is a project devised by the Hawk’s Well Theatre to collect stories about Sligo circa 1916, its environs as well as general stories about life in Sligo at that time. These stories were used as research material for this original theatre production, The Big Wall.