Carnmore/Claregalway group, Compántas Lir grace the stage in Taibhdhearc na Gaillimhe this month with its production of Shelagh Stephenson’s award-winning comedy, The Memory of Water. Galway audiences will have two opportunities to see this production, Sunday February 22nd and again in March, Wednesday 25th–Friday 27th.
The play focuses on three sisters who gather in their family home on the eve of their mother’s funeral. Brought together for such a sad occasion, the sisters nonetheless quickly begin to argue over recollections of times gone by. Over the course of two days, as bottles of whiskey are emptied, past conflicts, jealousies and family secrets are revealed and we learn how the incidents recalled have shaped who the sisters are today.
The play explores the strains of family relationships and how memories are distorted to suit the reality we wish to create. Stephenson’s story is a whirlwind of emotions-hilarious one moment and heart-wrenching the next. The sisters are forced to confront the choices they have made in their lives as they try to come to terms with their mother’s death and to mend their fragile relationships with each other and the men in their lives.
Compántas Lir will thread the boards again this season on the Amateur Drama Circuit. They will perform in six festivals on the following dates: Rush Drama Festival 24th of February, Claremorris Drama Festival 9th of March, Claregalway Drama Festival 12th of March, Strabane Drama Festival 13th of March, Glenamaddy Drama Festival 19th of March and Cavan Drama Festival 22nd of March.
Formed in 1983, Compántas Lir has grown from strength to strength thanks to a strong pool of actors and a skilled, dedicated crew. As 2014 came to a close, the group celebrated their All-Ireland victory, having won the One-Act Finals in Ballyshannon with Nine by Jane Shepherd. The groups continues to grow and each year welcomes new members who contribute to their success both onstage and backstage.
The Memory of Water is directed by Dermot Hession. Dermot is no stranger to the director’s chair, having previously had success on the one-act circuit with The Donoghue Sisters and Cecily. He has also directed, on numerous occasions, for the Autumn Theatre which takes place every October in Carnmore. The cast include many faces familiar to the Drama scene in Galway. Stella Fleming as Teresa, Fionnuala Glynn as Mary, Ruth O’Driscoll as Catherine, Breda Hannon as Vi, Mike Mc Namara as Mike and James Harris as Frank.