Interview with Shane Nestor – Ice Queen – Milano, Ranelagh

THE WAITERS 2Red_ Caps_Dec_2015

We had the chance to interview writer/ director Shane Nestor ahead of one of the more unusual theatre events this year, with a play taking place in Milano, Ranelagh. Shane is the man behind Act Up theatre company, and this is their 7th production. You can see the results below… Only question I forgot to ask is do we still have to tip!

The Ice Queen – Milano Restaurant, Ranelagh, D6 – Dates: Dec 3rd, 4th, 5th (Thurs to Sat) at 7.30pm

Bookings: actupclasses@gmail. com or 087-795 1558.

How did you come up with the idea of setting a piece of theatre in a restaurant?

I set up a theatre company awhile back and, in order to pay for the productions, I wound up waiting and used to jot down notes on the floor. Then I did an MA in screenwriting and worked on a screenplay about waiters called “Good things come to those who Wait”. A lot of the characters were based on the staff in the restaurant where I worked. The idea fermented over the last few years and eventually became the play The Ice Queen.

At what point did you approach the restaurant? Did you approach many restaurants or was this the first one?

I wanted to set this play site-specifically in a restaurant, so the actors didn’t have to pretend and the audience could be easily transported to that world. Also, I thought this was a great opportunity for a restaurant, particularly in a lull time, to draw attention to itself. I approached Busy Feet initially as I used to write there and they were very interested but I felt it was too small to entertain an audience and too busy to arrange rehearsals there. Then one night after 5-aside soccer, I was eating pizza with mates in Milano in Ranelagh and I got the notion to ask the manager about their space upstairs.

With a massive cast of 22, will all the staff you see on the night be actors?

Those who play waiters will help out Milano waiters on the floor. It wouldn’t be wise to let our chefs in the kitchen.

This is based on a true story, where did you first hear about it?

I was reading Stephen King’s On Writing recently and he was saying how often it’s two disparate ideas that form the basis for his stories. I found this to be the case with our last two plays, The Last Ride and The Ice Queen.

The first ideas in both instances were closer to home, where the second ones were down to newspaper articles I read. The Ice Queen was based on my own time waiting tables and a story I read about a manager in a restaurant who was killed by another staff-member for the day’s earnings. Saying no more…

Does this bring a new meaning to the term ‘dinner and a show’?

Is this the slang definition you’re talking about? No comment.

What are your plans for your next show?

A few ideas are floating around. 1. To do a TV Pilot based on the characters in The Ice Queen. 2. An adaptation of The Cherry Orchard that is set in West Cork. A bit like Upstairs Downtairs or Downtown Abbey with with an edge. We may set it in an old mansion…



Act Up presents a new play The Ice Queen  by Shane Nestor

Set site-specifically in Milano Ranelagh, and based on a true story, The Ice Queen tells the tale of a restaurant where a staff member is mysteriously murdered.

Featuring a talented cast of 22, this is Act Up’s seventh production and their following continues to grow. Their fun and entertaining productions with shorter playing times and affordable pricing is proving a hit with their audience – theatre-lovers and theatre-phobes alike.

For the reasonable price of €25, the audience will receive a main course, beverage (alc. or otherwise) and the play itself: an entertaining and real-life look at the workings of a restaurant at the centre of a crime.


Venue: Milano Restaurant, Ranelagh, D6.

Dates: Dec 3rd, 4th, 5th (Thurs to Sat) at 7.30pm

Bookings: actupclasses@gmail. com or 087-795 1558.

Tickets: €25

Categories: Header, interview, Theatre

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