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FUEL – Druid Emerging Artists

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FUEL 2015 | Artist Profile: Róisín Stack

FUEL 2015 Residency 3

Artist name: Róisín Stack

Project name: My Poet, Dark & Slender

Tell us a little bit about previous projects you have worked on:
I’ve worked as dramaturg (DoDo Theatre), director (Mephisto), performer (You Me Bum Bum Train; San Francisco Mime Troupe; Fregoli; GYT), mentor (NUIG Theatre Week; JOLT: Volition) and I’ve written and collaborated on pieces that have been staged at Edinburgh Fringe, Melbourne Fringe, Cúirt International Festival of Literature and Galway Arts Festival (as it was then).

Describe your project:
I read a beautiful English translation of a Padraig O’Conaire story, M’fhile Caol Dubh, and wanted to adapt it for the stage. It’s a story about a woman who has an affair with a poet who is not all that he seems, so there’s a real air of suspicion, passion and tension that lends itself to a good show, but having said that I don’t just want to put this story on stage as it is, I want to pull it apart a bit and find an interesting, theatrical way of telling it.

Why are you making this piece?
The story is passionate, funny, dark, moody and well written. Most people think of M’asal Beag Dubh when they think of O’Conaire but when I was researching I discovered that he is regarded as being very ahead of his time in his writing style and subject matter and I want to reflect that in a contemporary piece of theatre. It’s important for me personally to do this piece because over the years I have strayed from my own creativity and I think the wandering legend himself, O’Conaire, will be a good person to get me back on track.

Who or what are the main influences in your work?
I like photography so I’m interested in creating images and stillness in theatre. Fabulous Beast’s Giselle had a huge impact on me in terms of how I think of performance, as did Vesturport’s Metamorphosis. Eventually I’d love to create something that is both as visual and as moving as those pieces. For this project I’m looking at choreography and movement as well.

Where would you like to bring your finished piece?
I haven’t planned that far ahead but I like the idea of taking it around Ireland, not to major venues but to community centres and town halls. It would be a huge compromise technically but, coming from the country myself, I know how starved some rural areas are of theatre and I think I could lure people in with O’Conaire and rock their world with a strange performance . . . though I may have just blown my cover.

If you had to describe your performance style in one word, what would it be?

What elements of your piece do you hope to develop during your FUEL residency?
I’m planning to focus on devising with choreography, lighting and music.

Tell us about the people you will be working with during your residency:
At the moment I am working with a brilliant team of performers – Grace Kiely, Maria Lopez, Daniel Guinnane, Tracy Bruen and Lucia Smyth. Paul Houlihan is our mask artist. Conor Kennedy-Burke is going to help out with choreography, Mike O’Halloran is the lighting designer, and my brother Aindrias will be working on music.

What are you most excited about, with regard to the FUEL residency?
Getting to completely concentrate on developing this show for a whole week in a real theatre.

What do you think will be your biggest challenge during your FUEL residency?
Editing down the elements of this theatre stew.

When is the last time you were excited or inspired by a performance?
Not too long ago. Dead Centre’s Chekhov’s First Play excited me so much it almost made me give up on any notions of making theatre. It was unpredictable, funny, clever and brave. I was really excited by it and even willingly stayed for the post-show talk.

What would you be doing if you weren’t participating in a FUEL residency?
I would still be working on the show but in the evenings after work and mostly in my head. The rest of my energy would be going into Christmas – I am obsessed with it.

Róisín Stack is FUEL Artist in Residence from 7th – 12th December.


This page was archived on 28/03/2017 and is no longer updated.

The contents of this page may be out of date or incomplete. Go here to browse our current site