All eight of my BAI funded Irish radio plays are now available on podcast (click on the links on the right hand side of this page).
With particular thanks to Jim Nolan the director and Eugene Sully, the genius editor.
We had enormous fun and joy making them, I hope you enjoy listening to them!
Leave a comment | tags: eugene sully, humour, Jim Nolan, radio drama, radio plays, sue healy playwright, sue healy writer | posted in Uncategorized
Podcast available here
On this Armistice Day, I’m re-posting my KCLR 96fm BAI-funded play CAKE. This 45-minute play, set in Waterford 1915-1920, focuses on a local family challenged by opposing allegiances: Lance Corporal Joseph Bohan-O’Shea is fighting at the Somme whilst his Northern Protestant wife May raises their four children down south in Waterford City. However, Joseph’s staunchly Nationalist mother is angry with her son for taking the ‘Saxon shilling’ and betraying the family by joining the British Army. Her gender barring her from taking up arms herself, Mother persuades Joseph’s poet twin, Michael, to fight for Irish freedom, but Michael’s true passion is his unrequited love for his sister-in-law, May…. This story is a fictionalisation of my great-grandparents’ own story.
CAKE is directed by Jim Nolan, and stars Michael Power (winner of the Portsmouth International Film Festival’s 2014 Best Actor Award), Madeleine Brolly and Jenni Ledwell. CAKE also features a special recording of Waterford anthem In Happy Moments by William Vincent Wallace, performed here by Matthew Sprange, fresh from his Olivier Award winning performance in English Touring Opera’s Paul Bunyon.
5 Comments | tags: cake, Easter Rising, jenni ledwell, Jim Nolan, kclr, Madeleine Brolly, Michael Power, sue healy, WWI | posted in Uncategorized
An action/adventure radio drama in 45 mins, in English and Irish.
Scéal eachtraíochta, ar raidió, in nGaeilge agus i mBéarla.
The Blue King of Trafadden is my 9th radio play and concerns a troubled Afro-Caribbean dentist, Henry Ryan, who returns to the birthplace of his ancestors, Trafadden Island, Co. Waterford, with the intention of burying his grandmother’s ashes. Henry lodges with the ferryman Seamus, his partner Eimear and her son, little Óg. Secretly, Henry also hopes to exorcise the curse he is convinced his abandoned grandmother has put on him, a curse he believes has driven him to drug addiction and robbed him of his marriage and career.
Henry is not the only one on the island with a secret. Ferryman Seamus, afraid he is losing Eimear, is determined to make his fortune by developing a plot of land of historical significance and is worried that the authorities are going to slap a protection order on it. Seamus comes up with an illegal solution… Meanwhile, nine year old Óg, finds a skull, which he decides must be the head of his father. Eimear spends her time in earnest, secret Skype conversation with her sister….
The Blue King of Trafadden is funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the television licence fee.
Leave a comment | tags: ireland, irish language, Jim Nolan, montserrat, sue healy, Waterford | posted in Uncategorized
Strongbow’s Clock podcast on WLRfm (broadcast Oct. 27th).
Set in Brennan’s Bar, a peculiar pub on Waterford’s O’Connell street, Strongbow’s Clock is a comic ghost story concerning a pair of barflies, an immigrant Hungarian barman and the events that ensue when the pub’s clock stops working and a mysterious young woman is swept in the pub door.
Nick and Angela have met at the same time in Brennan’s Bar every evening, for years. They are served by Gabor, a Hungarian who has become ‘more Irish than the Irish themselves’, and who is a keen, if confused orator of Irish history. On this particular evening however, the antics of a Hallowe’en circus in town delays both Nick and Angela’s arrival and interrupts Gabor’s daily ceremony of winding the grandfather clock. The regular flow of events is thus unsettled, jovial banter turns nasty and the exposure of a dark secret looms. Then, the evening takes a further surreal turn with the arrival of a dazed young woman from Ferrybank…
Strongbow’s Clock is a comic ghost story. It is also a study of the consequences when unrequited love is toyed with carelessly, and the violence such passions can stir.
Strongbow’s Clock is directed by acclaimed playwright Jim Nolan and stars leading Irish talent Michael Power, Jenni Ledwell, Ema Lemon and Nick Kavanagh. Strongbow’s Clock was my fourth radio drama and followed Cow, The Daffodil and Cake, also directed by Jim Nolan. My radio work since includes: The Angel of Trafadden, Shellakybooky, The Cat in the Box and Mussels.
Strongbow’s Clock was made with the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the television license fee.
4 Comments | tags: ema lemon, eugene sully, ghost story, jenni ledwell, Jim Nolan, Michael Power, nicholas kavanagh, radio drama, Strongbow's Clock, sue healy | posted in Uncategorized
It’s spring, new beginnings, daffodils. In honour of the season that’s in it, I’m reposting a podcast of my 2013 radio drama ‘The Daffodil’.
Set on the fictional Irish island of Trafadden, The Daffodil tells the tale of the relationship between Eurovision wannabe ‘Liam Egan’ and Eurovision hasbeen ‘Banba’, both mired in denial for different reasons.
Starring Jenni Ledwell and Michael Power and directed by Jim Nolan.
You can listen to the podcast here
Leave a comment | tags: eugene sully, jenni ledwell, Jim Nolan, Michael Power, radio drama, sue healy, the daffodil | posted in Uncategorized
2016 marks the centenary of the Easter Rising, the week-long Irish insurrection against British occupation that was ultimately unsuccessful. Although it failed, the Rising is now generally viewed as lost but crucial battle on the road to Irish independence in 1922. The Easter Rising commemorations in this important anniversary year are ubiquitous and loud in Ireland, and there’s always a smiling politician at hand, often a vising diplomat, much money being poured into events – whilst the country faces serious contemporary challenges. There are some who might say that the ‘business’ of commemoration now sits in opposition to the ideals upon which the state was founded when independence was proclaimed from the GPO back in 1916.
Considering this contradiction in his new play ‘Johnny I Hardly Knew Ye’, is one of Ireland’s leading playwrights and theatre directors, Jim Nolan. If you happen to be around the Waterford area in March, go see this urgent comment on the business of the Rising.
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Budapest, Hungary, 2015. Nursing a broken heart, Mar Walsh travels from Waterford to Hungary to stay with her sister Brigette Walsh Cooney and family. Mar is impressed by her sister’s seemingly idyllic expat existence. Brigette simply ‘does not do negativity’ and her days are full of champagne and yoga. All is not how it seems, however, and cracks are soon evident in the Cooney’s perfect veneer. A mistress, a graffiti-obsessed son, an anarchist and a gay minister focused on change, all combine to shake the Cooney’s world and expose its fragility as the country’s political problems arrive on their doorstep in the form of a revolution.
Broadcasting on Monday, October 26th, 6pm-7pm (Irish time) on WLRfm.com
3 Comments | tags: Andrew Holden, Clodagh Walsh, ema lemon, jenni ledwell, Jim Nolan, Kieran Walsh, Michael Power, nicholas kavanagh, shellakybooky, sue healy, wlrfm | posted in Uncategorized
PODCAST HEREPlay PODCAST
Siobhan, a 38 year old Dublin teacher disenchanted with her dull existence in Portmarnock Primary School opts to chase Internet fame as a vlogger. In this pursuit, she travels to Trafadden Island, Co. Waterford, to vlog the wake of Fabiola, a woman of ill-repute who has apparently died twice. However, Trafadden island’s Mayor Daly is keen to have her focus on his legacy rather than the antics of the rougher elements of the local population. Mayor Daly’s attitude and behaviour at the wake enrages Fabiola’s corpse, chaos ensues and the fable takes a surprising turn…
The Angel of Trafadden is directed by Jim Nolan (director and writer-in-residence at Garter Lane Arts Centre) and stars Michael Power (winner of the Portsmouth International Film Festival Best Actor Award), Jenni Ledwell (Druid, Blue Raincoat, Passion Machine, Red Kettle) and Clodagh Power (Red Kettle, Theatre Royal).
Written and produced by Sue Healy, The Angel of Trafadden was made with the support of the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland with the television licence fee.PODCAST HERE
5 Comments | tags: clodagh power, eugene sully, jenni ledwell, Jim Nolan, Michael Power, radio drama, sue healy, trafadden, wlrfm | posted in Uncategorized
It’s gong season. But forget your Tonys and Emmys and Oliviers and what-have-ya. Surely, the only drama awards that really matter are from the country that has given the world William Congreve, Oscar Wilde, Jonathan Synge, Sean O’Casey, George Bernard Shaw, Brendan Behan, Brian Friel, Samuel Beckett, Martin McDonagh and Enda Walsh (to name a few)… yes, that’s right, Ireland. And today, the Irish Times Theatre Awards nominations were announced….
I’m particularly happy to see Jim Nolan’s play ‘Dreamland’ nominated for ‘Best New Play’. Jim, one of Ireland’s leading playwrights, has been a great supporter/mentor of mine over the years and has directed all four of my radio plays to date. ‘Dreamland’, which toured nationally in the early spring, also gets a ‘Best Supporting Actor’ nod for veteran Irish stage actor, Des Keogh. ‘Dreamland’ deserves to win, but even the nomination at least is recognition of Jim’s talent and tireless work for theatre, particularly in Waterford. I should mention that another of ‘Dreamland’ s cast is up-and-coming actor Michael Power. No stranger to awards himself (he won the Best Actor at the Portsmouth International Short-Film awards earlier this year), Michael is a core performer of our radio productions having acted in all four. So, to see Jim’s ‘Dreamland’ get two nods today, is very pleasing indeed for all of us.
Also, over in the Best Opera Production category, the Cork Operatic Society’s ‘Der Vampyr’, directed by Michael Barker Craven, is among the nominated – no doubt due in part to the talents of soprano Maire Flavin (yes, I’m biased, she’s my cousin – but she is a stand-out talent).
So, break a leg, my luvvies x
1 Comment | tags: Dreamland, gongs, Irish times theatre awards, Jim Nolan, Maire Flavin, Michael Power | posted in Uncategorized