Department of Theatre

Department of Theatre


The bulk of my class time would
be up on your feet doing a workshop. There would be very little sitting down
and talking. We would be up, doing, participating, taking part, having great
fun. And then the interesting thing for me is the students going away and
thinking about it and writing about it and going yeah, we had really great fun and I
learned these things, and I understand these things now. So it’s active,
participative, on your feet learning. When I started the course in UCC, I had a very
narrow or closed mind idea of what theatre was to be honest. That’s completely flipped. I feel like there’s actually way more things that you can do in theatre
and I feel like we’ve been given those opportunities because there’s been a lot
of teachers that come from different backgrounds. I came from the Abbey
Theatre into academia so I bring the excitement of putting a play up into
my work in a very practical way. My expertise comes through theatre
management, theatre casting, theatre producing. I’m from Galway and I chose to come to Cork and study theatre rather than going because firstly, I love Cork
City and I wanted to come explore a new place. I came to Ireland and UCC just
happened to be a really good fit for me, both because of the opportunities that I
thought that it showed for me. It was a very diverse programme which I felt very
in tune with. It’s wonderful to have that mix in a group. It’s a very
broad mix and students just bring so much to each other as an ensemble. So
they come in in first year and as they go through their year groups
they’re growing as an ensemble and they’re coming out actually as
colleagues in the industry. We are building close links to
institutions here locally in Cork as well. We are pleased about close
cooperation with the Everyman Theatre for example or with
Graffiti Theatre Company or Cyclone Repertory. The mix between practice-based learning and the academic learning in UCC means that I have a full experience
as a student like other students do whether you’re studying science or
computers or anything else because we have a very university-based, academic
side to it, but then also because we have this performative, practice-based side, it
means that we go out understanding both and looking at things from both sides
also. Here in the department we put the emphasis on the performative. So what does the performative actually mean? In the first place, performative means
creative doing. Our students are being creative day-in day-out. They are
involved in so many interesting projects. What I love most about what I do is that
it’s never the same every day. There’s so many opportunities in UCC between the drama society and all the work that the theatre department do. So
part of a very exciting part of this module is that students will get to
present those concepts to producers here in Cork, Julie Kelleher in the Everyman, Eibhlín Gleeson at the Opera House and the producers at the Abbey Theatre. They actually get you ready for a theatre in a more professional sense is
what I found. They get you ready for, OK you want to go into the theatre, you want
to be an actor, this is how you do it. This is how you set up your headshots
and your resumes. This is how you go audition and talk to real-life theatres.
I was really into acting, but from coming into this course I actually learnt about
a lot of stage management and the design and technical aspects of theatre. I’m
really excited about the new collaboration with Cork Opera House. I
think that it will open particularly my field of applied drama up to new
interests and new people who might not have experienced the notion of theatre
being more than entertainment. And while theatre is incredibly entertaining, there
are so many practical applications in terms of looking at how people think or opening people up to different experiences. We need really good,
innovative, engaged, lively producers in this country and further afield. With
my international year then I also managed to actually get a professional
job over there in California and then I did an internship just last summer
and now they’re waiting for me to come back with an opera company. So I’m just
waiting to get out of here now!

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