John McCullagh February 20, 2005
The first performance in the 24th Lislea Drama Festival begins next Saturday evening at 8.30 in the local Community Centre.  Clanabogan Drama Circle of Tyrone presents ‘Far Off Fields’ by Lennox Robinson.  Nightly tickets are

 
On Sunday evening it is the Two Bridges Theatre Group from Derry.  This is an offshoot of the celebrated Playhouse Players and they present ‘Black Comedy’ by Peter Shaffer.  I believe the stage action reverses the normal dark/light situation (with players groping in the light and perfectly competent in its absence) and is a ‘black comedy’ in both senses of the phrase.
 
The third performance is on Wednesday 2 March when John Keyes (one-time director of Newry Arts Centre) presents his one-man biopic of the life of Michael MacLiammmoir.  He was a central figure in the development of the theatre in Ireland in the early and mid-twentieth century. It is entitled ‘The Importance of being Michael’.  This is not part of the competitive Festival.
 
Last year’s winners, the Creggan Drama Circle of Tyrone present ‘April Bright’ by Dermot Bolger on Saturday night week, 5th March.  That weekend’s performances is completed by Pomeroy Players (Tyrone) with Johnny Belinda by Elmer Harris.
 
The ever-popular Juno and the Paycock (Sean O’Casey) is presented by St Dympna’s Drama Society of Dromore (Tyrone) on Wednesday 9th March. 
 
The Festival concludes on Friday 11th March with the home side (Lislea Players) presenting Patrick Kavanagh’s Tarry Flynn.  A review of the latter will follow here.
 
The Adjudicator P. J. Croal will present the Awards Night on the following Friday evening, 12 March. 
 
You are urged to attend as many of the performances as possible.  It is always worthwhile.

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