Oscars-bound actor Michael Patric’s one-man show earns plaudits in Cork

After his success with Seán Moylan in Newmarket, Michael Patric is off to Los Angeles this weekend where An Cailín Ciúin, in which he starred as Cáit's dad, is shortlisted for the Best International Feature Film award.

Michael Patric as Sean Moylan in the recent Sold Out show in the Cultúrlann Newmarket. Written and produced by Michael. (Photo by Eddie Hennessy)

Michael Patric as Sean Moylan in the recent Sold Out show in the Cultúrlann Newmarket. Written and produced by Michael. (Photo by Eddie Hennessy)

Eilis HouriganCorkman

Michael Patric has had a busy few weeks, attending the BAFTAs in the middle of February, and this weekend he is off to Los Angeles to attend the Oscars.

The film An Cáilín Ciúin, in which he played the role of ‘Da’, received nominations in both prestigious awards ceremonies.

This ground-breaking Irish-language film has made waves not only in Ireland but across the globe.

The Newmarket man somehow found time in the middle of this very hectic schedule to write and perform a play about republican revolutionary and politician Seán Moylan. No mean task to take on; Seán Moylan was a complex character and the topic of the civil war is still a contentious subject for many, even now, 100 years on.

The play opened in the Cultúrlann for two nights last weekend. Both nights were completely sold out, with people coming from far and near to attend.

The audience were seated early and the show kicked off at 8pm sharp. With minimal set and the imposing backdrop of the old church windows, Michael took to the stage, the embodiment of the character of Seán Moylan, here to tell us some of his story.

It was a masterclass in both writing and acting. There wasn’t a sound to be heard from the venue throughout the performance as we followed the journey of Seán through the war of Independence to the early days of the Civil War.

Michael has an almost magical ability to hold an audience in the palm of his hand, one minute eliciting tears of laughter, the next leading to a moment of profound sadness. It was an extremely well-balanced piece of work, based on the detailed account of Moylan’s memory of the War of Independence to the Bureau of Military History, his Dáil speeches and other sources, all impeccably researched by the writer.

It is not just a story about North Cork, nor is it just an Irish story, it is universal. It is the story of suffering, sacrifice and bravery of normal men and women standing up to power, a story that is sadly far too relevant to the modern world.

The play’s director was Geoff Gould, founder and Artistic Director of Blood in the Alley Theatre Company, who both produced this play and the outstanding piece about Bernard O’Donoghue’s poetry, The Donoghue, which ran in the Cultúrlann last year.

Cormac O’Connor was the Designer and lighting was by Philip McIntyre.

Funding was provided by Cork County Council and the Arts Council. The play will be running in the Cat Club in the Cork Arts Theatre for five nights at the end of this month (March 28, 29, 30 and 31 April 1) and you can buy tickets online (ticketstop.ie).

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