Clonakilty Macra have taken home the top prize at Macra na Feirme’s All-Ireland radio drama final, with the performance of A Day in the Life of a Pencil by Raymond Scannell. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, Macra na Feirme changed their drama competition to a radio drama format to ensure that the much loved competition could go ahead virtually. The six plays that reached the final were released on the Macra podcast for the general public to listen to and the plays were judged by the award-winning writer, director and actor Seamus O’Rourke.
Speaking during the live results show last Friday night, Seamus congratulated all those who got involved in the new radio drama format and said ‘the biggest part of this competition is to take part, get stuck in and to enjoy it.’ Seamus is a Macra alumnus and thanked Macra for giving him a start in the performing arts and building his confidence on and off the stage. Announcing the winners, he praised the clubs for tackling a difficult and technical format, which saw all clubs recording their plays without meeting in person. Killarney Macra placed third with their play ‘Brief interviews with Internet Cats’ by Patrick Greene and Ballincollig Macra came second with their play ‘There’s Something about Slurry: Club Chat Confessions’, written by club member Mairéad Twohig. Clonakilty Macra were announced as the winners, much to the delight of the cast and club members who were watching.
The club also took home the Best Actor award for Joseph O’Sullivan’s portrayal of Martin Farrell, the young protagonist of the play. Producer John O’Leary thanked Raymond Scannell for his kind permission to perform ‘A Day in the Life of a Pencil’ and commended Macra on ensuring the competition went ahead despite the pandemic, as it provided the club with a creative outlet over the past number of months. The cast was made up of Aine Tobin, Anna Quinn, Bernard Keane, Carmel O’Sullivan, Ciara O’Donovan, Hannah O’Hea, John Collins, Joseph O’Sullivan, Karen McCarthy and Theresa O’Leary, and was produced by John O’Leary and edited by Andrew O’Sullivan. The winning radio drama can be listened to on the Macra na Feirme podcast on Acast and there is a link to it on the Clonakilty Macra Facebook and Instagram pages.
This has been a hugely successful year for Clonakilty Macra in the Macra competitions, which range from performing arts, to sports competitions. Starting with a third place in the Impromptu Public Speaking national competition for Anne Barrett, a first and second place in the national Comedy Sketch competition for Theresa, John and Agnes O’Leary, a first place in the National Talent Ballad competition for Ciara O’Donovan, Sara Joyce, Mary Sheehan, Joseph and Carmel O’Sullivan and a first place for club member Mary Sheehan in the first Macra Novice Debating national final as part of a Carbery rainbow team. Anyone interested in getting involved in Clonakilty Macra can contact the club on [email protected] to find out more information about all that Macra has to offer.