WEST CORK : Rural Theatre Festival underway – ‘West Cork Fit-up Festival’

25 July 2017
By Elaine Murphy

Entertainment News

The West Cork Fit-up Festival aims is to provide “access to professional theatre in rural locations”. The first Fit-up Theatre Festival opened in West Cork in the summer 2009 and toured three shows to five West Cork villages. Nine years later and there are now three Fit-up Theatre Festival’s, The Blackwater Fit-up Theatre Festival which runs in late January February, The West Waterford Fit-up Theatre Festival in May and the original West Cork Fit-up Theatre Festival during July and August.

The West Cork Fit-up Festival 2017 takes place July 18th – 13th of August to present a month of engaging and memorable theatre. Everyone in West Cork knows that the summer is well and truly underway once the Fit-up team arrive in their local hall. For nine years now Blood in the Alley Theatre company have entertained audiences in West Cork with a diverse variety of professional theatre productions, both national and international. Whether you like the show or not everyone agrees that the standard is always top class and often as good as any show you will see in Edinburgh or the West End.

Over the years productions like Pat Kinevane’s Oliver award winner Silent, Sonya Kelly’s “How to Keep an Alien”, Red Bear’s “Hard Faster More” and the stunning My Real Life performed by Don Wycherley, which is currently running at the Edinburgh Theatre Festival, have made the festival a “must see” vocation in West Cork and this season is no exception.

Organisers told TheCork.ie

“We kick of week one with Katie Holly’s second play Sharon. Her first play Marion was a smash hit at the Cork Midsummer Festival and Sharon comes directly from this year’s Midsummer event. Week two we present Fishamble’s The Humours of Bandon, a coming of age story, full of heart, humour & wisdom, for anyone who had a childhood passion that threatened to overwhelm their life.  This award winning show is written and performed by Margert McAuliffe and it will be her second time performing at the Fit-up Festival following Jezebel (Rough Magic) in 2014. Last summer Kabosh theatre introduced West Cork audiences to playwright Laurence McKeown’s hard hitting political play Those You Pass on the Street and they return, week three of the festival, with his new companion piece, Green & Blue. This play explores the lives of a Cork Garda and RUC officer who patrolled the border during the height of the conflict and is full of humour and pathos.”

The 2017 West Cork Fit-up concludes with End of Day by Samuel Beckett. Performed by one of Ireland’s leading stage actors Denis Conway this new production, originally commissioned by ‘Happy Days Enniskillen International Beckett Festival 2016’, provides audiences a rare opportunity to enjoy, in one show, some of Beckett’s most profound and entertaining work. Once more this year’s festival presents a masterful mix of compelling, interesting and most importantly high quality theatre which will leave audiences in West Cork discussing them long after the festival finishes.”Tickets are available at the door and a limited amount are available online, doors open 30 minutes before the show starts. Not suitable for under 14. Some venues have limited seating for more info go to www.fit-uptheatrefestival.com and the Fit-up theatre festival Facebook page.

The Fit-up was set up as a joint initiative by Blood in the Alley theatre company and Cork County Council, and later with the support of The Arts Council.

Full Listing for West Cork Fit-Up Theatre Festival:


Shoestring Theatre Presents Sharon Written by Katie Holly

Week one:

Tue. July 18th 8:15, Whiddy Island

Wed. July 19th – 8:00 Community Hall, Kilcrohane

Thu. July 20th – 8:00 Community Hall, Glengarriff

Fri. July 21st – 8:00Community Hall, Sherkin Island

Sat. July 22nd – 8:00 Lecture Theatre (Camp Church)

Sun. July 23rd – 8:00 Community Hall, Ballydehob


Fishamble: The New Play Company’s The Humours of Bandon, Written & performed by Margert McAuliffe

Week two:

Tue. July 25th – 8:30 Island Cottage Gallery, Heir Island

Wed: July 26th – 8:00 Community Hall, Kilcrohane

Thu. July 27th – 8:00 Community Hall, Glengarriff

Fri. July 28th – 8:00 Community Hall, Sherkin Island

Sat. July 29th – 8:00 Lecture Theatre (Camp Church)

Sun. July 30th – 8:00 Community Hall, Ballydehob


Kabosh Theatre Present : Green & Blue Written By Lawrence McKeown

Week three:

Tue. August 1st – 8:15 Bank House Whiddy Island

Wed. August 2nd – 8:00 Community Hall, Kilcrohane

Thu. August 3rd – 8:00 Community Centre, Timoleague

Fri. August 4th – 8:00 Sherkin Island

Sat. August 5th – 8:00 Lecture Theatre (Camp Church)

Sun. Aug 6th – 8:00 Community Hall, Ballydehob

Blood in the Alley The Alley presents End of Day

Week four:

Tue August 8th – 8:30 Island Cottage Gallery, Heir Island

Wed. August 9th – 8:00 Community Hall, Kilcrohane

Thur. August 10th – 8:00 Community Centre, Timoleague

Fri. August 11th – 8:00 Sherkin Island

Sat. August 12th – 8:00 Lecture Theatre (Camp Church),

Sun. August 13th – 8:00 Community Hall

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