Hi there! Those of you who know me will know I wrote a play about my uncle Brendan — 'Brendan at the Chelsea' — that starred Adrian Dunbar and toured from London to Belfast and New York, ("A must-see”, NY Times). Now I've written another that I'm really proud of and excited about – and want people to see. In order for that to happen, and with massive amounts of help from my wonderful director Jessica Higgs, I have begun booking a small tour — 5 venues so far which I'm hoping will grow into something bigger.
I've put in for a small Arts Council grant, but they will only hand over the money if I can match their funding which is where your support will come in particularly handy.
It will still be touring on a shoe-string — no chauffeurs, no first-night parties at the Savoy. The money will help cover production costs: pay for venues, lighting, sound, transport, rehearsals, flyers — all the stuff I need to present the show at its very best and make sure I don't end up playing to one man and his dog. It's a great night out — funny, absorbing, moving — and I want it to be seen by as wide an audience as possible. Who knows, maybe this one can travel to New York too?
'Why Shouldn't I Go?' is a one-act play — three Irish women of a certain age, telling their very individual stories, written and performed by me. Here's a taster of the three of them.
REALTINE —'So one day a nun came to the school. A beautiful creature from the Poor Clare. Not many women can look that beautiful in a nun's habit.'
NOREEN — 'Come near me again with that thing and I’ll chop it off for you! You won’t be so big when I’ve finished with you, I’m telling you boy! I’ll chop it off for you, CHOP, CHOP, CHOP!'
SUSAN —'When I was a child on the farm, I used to sit, looking out the window at the pouring rain, thinking of all the different places I could go, all the different lives I could live.'
The tour (so far)
Belsize Community Library, London — 4th October 2019
Ropetackle, Shoreham by Sea — 8th October 2019
London Irish Centre, Camden — 31st October, 1st and 2nd November 2019
Lewisham Irish Centre — 25th January 2020
Purple Playhouse, Brighton — 24th, 25th and 26th May, 2020
Video: Extract from ‘Realtine’, written and performed by Janet Behan, directed by Jessica Higgs, filmed by Jonathan Higgs
Photo: The National Photographic Archive, National Library of Ireland