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Donal O’ Kelly plays with Shell

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TUESDAY, 02 July 2013

The controversial Shell Corrib gas project takes centre stage when the theatrical force that is Donal O’Kelly returns to the Linenhall Arts Centre in Castlebar with his latest work, Benbo Productions’ surreal and heartfelt ‘Ailliliú Fionnuala’ tomorrow night, Wednesday, July 3.

Written and performed by O’Kelly, directed by Sorcha Fox and designed by Robert Ballagh, ‘Ailliliú Fionnuala’ centres on Ambrose Keogh, who works for Shell. When the tunnel-boring machine he named Fionnuala sinks into the bog in Erris, he is magically confronted by the legendary Fionnuala of the Children of Lir. Fionnuala puts a geas on him – he’s bound to tell the truth about Shell’s operations. During his ordeal, Ambrose meets his school classmate, Malachy Downes, a Shell-to-Sea activist, and echoes from the past resound.

Donal O’Kelly’s award-winning solo plays include ‘Catalpa’, ‘Joyced!’, ‘The Cambria’, ‘The Adventures Of The Wet Señor’ and ‘Vive La’. He has performed his shows in cities all over the world, including New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Melbourne, London, Paris, Rome, Helsinki, Warsaw, Harare, Lusaka and most recently Belgrade. He is also well known on screen as Bimbo in Roddy Doyle’s ‘The Van’, and Jap in the bilingual film ‘Kings’.
‘Ailliliú Fionnuala’ has received rave reviews, with The Irish Times saying the play ‘Digs for truth beneath the controversies’. O’Kelly’s performance has been described as ‘superb’ (Sunday Independent) and ‘Stirring’ by Irish Theatre Magazine.

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