Stars come out for big gala at Cork Opera House

What's on Cork stages this week? Jo Kerrigan takes a look in her weekly Theatre Nights column
Stars come out for big gala at Cork Opera House

Majella Cullagh who will be among those performing tonight (Thursday) at Cork Opera House to mark the Montforts College of Performing Arts 60th anniversary.

THE Montfort College of Performing Arts is turning sweet 60 and everyone’s invited!

The big gala celebration taking place tonight at the Opera House will feature a plethora of stars who have all come through the doors of Montfort’s over their six decades of being a Cork institution, turning the finest talent, many of whom have gone on to enjoy incredible careers in the arts internationally.

Part of the celebration will be paying homage to the years gone by, and the Montforts are asking members of the public to get in touch with their own memories so they can be archived. Just email info@montfortcollege.com with your stories and memories to become part of their history.

Tonight’s gala will feature both current and returning Montfort students, legends, guest stars, the 100-strong Montfort Gala Choir and a 20-piece orchestra. 

Produced by Trevor Ryan, directed by Killian Collins, and with the gifted skills of musical director John O’Brien, among those participating will be Majella Cullagh, Valerie O’ Leary, Shirley McCarthy, Irene Warren, Michael Sands, Lorraine Comiskey, Ian McGuirk, Mark O’ Shaughnessy, Rebecca Allman, Dolores Dermody, Elaine Carlile, Barry O’ Reilly, Deirdre White, Deirdre O’ Riordan, Catherine Mahon Buckley, Maura Currivan, Frank Twomey, Ciaran Bermingham, Joe O’ Gorman, Karen Hackett, Laura Mitchell, Kenneth Speight, John Daly, Eimear McCarthy, Sarah Burke, Pat O’ Regan, and - straight from ‘Les Miserables’ in London’s West End - Clare O’ Leary. Going to be quite a night! 8pm start.

10CC perform at Cork Opera House on September 4. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire
10CC perform at Cork Opera House on September 4. Picture: Ian West/PA Wire

That’s followed by the legendary 10CC on Sunday next, September 4. Yes, the band that has sold more than 30 million albums around the world will be lifting the roof at the Opera House that night. This is the concert that was rescheduled from lockdown days, and all those previously booked tickets are still valid. Otherwise, check out www.corkoperahouse.ie or ring 021 427 0022 for all tickets.

This, That, and the Other, is this week’s presentation at the Cork Arts Theatre. Written and directed by Pádraig O’ Connor, it’s a play about two people taking on a marathon. ‘This’ is a runner. She knows what a marathon entails, but she’s trained and trained and feels ready to go. ‘That’ on the other hand, has not been training. He’d probably rather be anywhere else, but he’s here now, and he does look great in running shorts, so he might as well just go for it. It’s also a play about the hectic pace of modern life, about the time we have and how we choose to spend it. It’s about why we run and what we might be running away from. 

This production is part of the theatre’s Creative Empowerment Programme 2022 – ten productions that push boundaries, open minds and give voice to those who are too often excluded or silenced. 

Continues until Saturday at 8pm nightly. Next week brings that much-loved classic, Arsenic and Old Lace. www.corkartstheatre.com or 021 450 5624 for all bookings.

Prosecco Express at Everyman this week is sold out, but next week brings The Steward of Christendom, that strikingly evocative piece by Sebastian Barr, revisiting the handover of Dublin Castle by the English to Michael Collins in 1922. That runs Tuesday to Saturday, September 6 to 10, at 8pm, with a post-show talk on Wed night. 021 450 1673 or www.everymancork.com.

Advance warning, so you can make your plans: the Pitch’d Circus and Street Arts Festival 2022 will return to the streets of Cork from September 9 to 25. Events at The Circus Factory of course, but also other cool venues like Marina Market, The Everyman, Firkin Crane, the Coal Quay and more. This year’s theme is Next Steps, aiming to remind us, in the midst of the chaos that surrounds on all sides, why a healthy culture of arts is important. More info on that next week!

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