Eugene Delaney representing the Moat Club, Naas, receives the Leinster Leader Cup from editor Laura Coates
The rafters were raised with cheers off Kildare town’s CWMS Hall last Friday night when Naas’ own Moat Club drama group claimed the Leinster Leader Perpetual Cup and were crowned the overall winners of the 59th annual Kildare Drama Festival.
Leinster Leader editor Laura Coates presented the cup - which has been awarded to the best overall Open Section production in the festival since its inception six decades ago - to ‘The God of Carnage’ director Eugene Delaney.
The Moat Club had closed the festival with their engaging four-hander. Their whipsmart, tight, side-splittingly funny production of Yazmina Raza’s play features Conor O’Connell, Sarah Gallagher, Anne Delaney and Pádraig Broe, in a story about two warring couples arguing over their fighting children.
Delaney also took the Best Actress, Open Section, honour, and the Moat Club won the Bill Rea Memorial Cup, voted by season ticket holders, for Most Entertaining Play.
It was also a good night for the Prosperous Dramatic Society, who also competed in the Open Section with their production of Edward Albee’s ‘The Play About The Baby’.
They took the Open Section runner-up trophy, plus the McGrath Cup for best producer (Lurlene Duggan); the Johnny O’Connor Memorial Award for the best moment in theatre, featuring Amanda Ryan; the Betty McConville Perpetual Trophy for best costume and design; Best Actor (Robert Massey) and Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Amanda Ryan).
Eight groups participated in this year’s festival, which ran over a week and a half and was adjudicated by Martin Maguire. The main sponsor was Kildare Credit Union.
The festival featured modern plays that were talking points during the week, including Patrick Marber’s ‘Closer’ and Elaine Murphy’s ‘Little Gem’.Festival secretary Ian Weir said: “Some of the plays were controversial, but that is what drama is about.”
Full list of winners:
The Leinster Leader Perpetual Cup for Best Overall Production: The Moat Club for ‘The God of Carnage’.
Runner Up: Prosperous Dramatic Society for ‘The Play About The Baby’.
The McGrath Cup for Best Producer: Lurlene Duggan, Prosperous Dramatic Society.
Certificate of Merit (Adjudicator’s discretion): Gorey Little Theatre, Tribes, set design.
Best Actor: Robert Massey, Prosperous Dramatic Society.
Best Actress: Anne Delaney, The Moat Club.
Best Actor in a Supporting Role: David Pepper, Gorey Little Theatre.
Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Amanda Ryan, Prosperous Dramatic Society.
The Canon Hayes Memorial Cup for Best Overall Production: Holycross/Ballycahill Drama Group for ‘Little Gem’.
Runner Up: Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society for ‘The Odd Couple’.
The Paddy Tynan Cup for Best Producer: Philip McDonnell, Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society.
Certificate of Merit (Adjudicator’s discretion): Bailieborough Drama Group, ‘The Tides’.
Best Actor: Ollie Turner, Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society.
Best Actress: Trisha Lowry/Jacqui Lacey, Holycross/Ballycahill Drama Group (shared).
Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Andrew Carney, Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society.
Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Eleanor Sheridan, Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society.
The Eddie Walker Cup for best overall characterisation: Martin Silke as Murray in ‘The Odd Couple’ (Dunmore Amateur Dramatic Society).
The Bill Rea Memorial Cup, voted by Season Ticket holders for most entertaining play: The Moat Club for ‘God of Carnage’
The Playlight Trophy for backstage crew: Curtain Call Productions for ‘Closer’.
The Johnny O’Connor Memorial Award for the best moment in theatre: Amanda Ryan, Prosperous Dramatic Society.
The Betty McConville Perpetual Trophy for best costume and design: Prosperous Dramatic Society.
Lurlene Duggan, Prosperous Dramatic Society production of ‘The Play about the Baby’, receives the McGrath Cup for Best Producer, pictured with Mary O’Sullivan. Photos: Tony Keane
For more photos from the night, see this week's Leinster Leader