Where is the Protestant community today? Discussion in East Belfast on Thursday evening, along with preview of Paisley & Me

Paisley & Me is a new play by Ron Hutchinson that examines Ulster Protestants through the eyes of Ian Paisley and his family. Dan Gordon will be donning his heavy overcoat and dog collar [Ed – Never!?] to play the preacher and politician, joined on stage by actors Stella McCusker, Lalor Roddy and Des McAleer.

The play opens in the Marketplace Theatre in Armagh on Friday 26 and Saturday 27 October, before transferring to The Grand Opera House for a week’s run during the Belfast Festival at Queen’s (Tuesday 30 October – Saturday 3 November).

You can also catch the production on a short tour at the following venues:

(There’s a certain irony in the some of the play’s performances receiving financial support from council community relations programmes using funds from OFMdFM!)

But if you want a sneak preview of Paisley & Me then come along to The Shipyard Church (Westbourne Presbyterian Community Church at the bottom of the Newtownards Road) at 7pm on Thursday 18 October.

As well as excerpts from the play, there will be a performances and readings by local community groups, and a panel discussion featuring Michael Copeland MLA, Sammy Douglas MLA, Councillor John Kyle, Jackie McDonald (UPRG), asking:

Where is the Protestant community today?

The panel will be chaired by Noel Thompson, who is no longer busy with Hearts & Minds on a Thursday evening! [Updatefollow up post covering the debate (including audio)] Contact marketing AT gblproductions DOT com for to register in advance for the preview, or just turn up on Thursday night!

Alan Meban. Normally to be found blogging over at Alan in Belfast where you’ll find an irregular set of postings, weaving an intricate pattern around a diverse set of subjects. Comment on cinema, books, technology and the occasional rant about life. On Slugger, the posts will mainly be about political events and processes. Tweets as @alaninbelfast.