Interview with Janet Moran – Director of ‘A Holy Show’
Project Arts Centre, Dublin – 23 – 25 January: Nationwide Tour Dates below.
The news story this play is based on happened in 1981. Did the story make an impression on you at the time or did you only hear about it years later?
I saw the 1981 episode of Reeling in the Years which shows footage of the hijack. That was the first I’d heard of it and I was amazed that it was known not about more widely.
I was lucky too that I told a friend of mine that I had an idea to write something about it and coincidentally his son had been on the plane so I was able to interview him.
What was it about the story that inspired you to write this work?
It seemed so quintessentially Irish a hijacking in that the reason for it was so innocent in a way. It also reminded me of how terrified I had been as a child when I heard about the third secret of Fatima and how it might be about the end of the world. I thought it could be a really fun way to look at Ireland’s relationship to faith and how that has changed.
You are mainly known as an actor. Could you ever see yourself working as a director full time, or do you love performing too much?
I think I love performing too much to ever want to stop. I do love the challenge of writing and directing. It’s really exciting to get to do these things having been an actor for so long. Writing is really hard and I think it makes you especially vulnerable but it’s also a real privilege too, to get to tell a story. And the real pleasure of directing is the collaborating with the designers and actors and making something collectively.
The show is about to tour Ireland. Will you be touring with this production?
I won’t be at all the venues because I won’t be needed and I also know, as an actor, that actors hate having directors around too much after you open. It’s really theirs and the stage managers once the show is up. I’ll pop in though to keep an eye on them!
What’s the best Christmas present you ever got?
A first edition of Bailegangaire by Tom Murphy which I was lucky enough to get him to inscribe for my son.
Nationwide Tour Dates:
23 – 25 January: Project Arts Centre, Dublin
29 January: Town Hall Theatre, Galway
31 January -1 February: Belltable Arts Centre, Limerick
4 February: Dunamaise Arts Centre, Portlaoise
5 February: Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray
7 Feb: Ramor Theatre, Cavan
8 February: Visual, Carlow
11-12 February: Civic Theatre, Tallaght
14-15 February: Pavilion Theatre, Dún Laoghaire
17 – 20 February: Everyman Cork
21 February: Backstage, Longford
22 February: Draiocht, Blanchardstown
25 February: Glor, Ennis
27 – 29 February: The MAC, Belfast
4-5 March: Irish Cultural Centre, Paris
7 March: Source, Thurles