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:
- Monday 5 November, Braid Arts Centre, Ballymena
- Tuesday 6 November, Craic Theatre & Arts Centre, Dungannon
- Wednesday 7 November, Burnavon Arts Centre, Cookstown
- Thursday 8 November, Strule Arts Centre, Omagh
- Friday 9 November, Down Arts Centre, Downpatrick
- Saturday 10 November, Alley Arts Centre, Strabane
(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! [Update – follow 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. Tweets as @alaninbelfast. Blogs about cinema and theatre over at Alan in Belfast. A freelancer who writes about, reports from, live-tweets and live-streams civic, academic and political events and conferences. He delivers social media training/coaching; produces podcasts and radio programmes; is a FactCheckNI director; a member of Ofcom’s Advisory Committee for Northern Ireland; and a member of the Corrymeela Community.