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glór announces a major co-production with Rough Magic premiering new theatre in Clare: Cleft by Fergal McElherron opens on June 7


Rough Magic and glór

In association with Galway International Arts Festival and Kilkenny Arts Festival

present Cleft
Written by Fergal McElherron.
Directed by Lynne Parker │Starring Simone Kirby and Penny Layden
Previews in glór Thursday 6 June 8pm Runs Friday 7 – Saturday 8 June 8pm

Everything meets there. Anord. Everything crashes there; the waves crash into the land, the sky crashes into the sea, the wind crashes against your body.’

glór and Rough Magic are thrilled to premiere new Irish writing in a major co-production between the two organisations – Cleft, written by Fergal McElherron will premiere in glór, Ennis this June.

Directed by Lynne Parker and starring Ennis actress Simone Kirby, along with Penny Layden, Cleft is a dark, funny, folkloric tale of two sisters bringing up a child in a peripheral rural community.

Twin sisters Fea and Caireen, living on a harsh, remote island, are raising a boy together. Abandoned by their mother at a young age and left in their teens to fend for themselves by their troubled father, the women have created their own emotional ecosystem. While Caireen embraces motherhood Fea struggles as she watches the boy grow in the likeness of his father whose body lies buried beneath the hawthorn tree.

Cleft – a visceral story of one family’s unrelenting will to survive – and ultimately to make choices based on instinct.

Once again, Clare’s flagship Arts Centre, glór is placing theatre squarely at the heart of its programme, having premiered Jacinta Sheerin’s Sweet About Me in March, and now presenting Cleft in a major co-production with one of the country’s most respected theatre companies.

glór and Rough Magic have been working to bring this project to fruition for some years now. We are so proud to collaborate with one of Ireland’s pioneering theatre companies to premier new Irish work in Clare, with one of Ennis’ finest actors, Simone Kirby sharing the lead,’ says glór’s Interim Director, Patricia Callaly.

Cleft will bring together some of the best creative talent working in the Irish Theatre industry, with direction by Rough Magic’s award-winning Artistic Director Lynne Parker; design by Zia Bergin-Holly and an original score and sound design by Cameron Macaulay.

Cleft is a co-production between Rough Magic and glór, kindly supported by Creative Ireland.

‘Rough Magic is delighted to fulfil a true creative partnership with our colleagues at glór in bringing this extraordinary play to the world stage,’ says Lynne Parker, Artistic Director of Rough Magic.

Simone Kirby     Fea
Penny Layden    Caireen

Creative team
Lynne Parker               Director
Zia Bergin-Holly         Lighting Designer
Cameron Macaulay    Composer/Sound Designer

About Fergal McElherron
Fergal McElherron has worked extensively as an actor with companies including The Abbey Theatre, Druid Theatre, Replay Productions, Rough Magic, Storytellers, The Royal Exchange, (Manchester), The Tricycle, (London), The Corn Exchange, Performance Corporation and Landmark Productions. To Have and To Hold, commissioned and produced by Kabosh, led to a nomination for the prestigious Stewart Parker Award. All three of his radio plays have been produced by RTÉ: In the Blink of An Eye; Prodigal starring Domhnall Gleeson; and the award-winning Chopped Liver, starring Charlene McKenna. McElherron is currently working on his first novel.

About Rough Magic
Since its foundation in 1984 Rough Magic has built an organisation characterised by continual regeneration. Its adherence to artistic excellence, pluralism, and the creative ensemble has delivered over 50 Irish premieres, the debuts of many theatre-makers, and the pioneering SEEDS programme. Based in Dublin, Rough Magic regularly tours in Ireland, the UK and beyond. The company continues to serve as a creative hub within Irish theatre, providing support to emerging theatre-makers and sharing resources with individual artists and independent companies. With each project we undertake, the aim is firstly to make great theatre, but also to advance and contribute to the cultural life of Ireland.