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The West Awakes | 2010

What We've Done - Productions

The Ballad of Reading Gaol

Year: 2015
Writer: Oscar Wilde
Director: Paula McFetridge
Cast: James Doran, Frank McCusker
Designer: Liz Cullinane
Video Designer: Stephen Quinn
Sound design and production manager: Robin Fenwick
Producers: Zoe Fox and Dominic Montague

The Balladof Reading Gaol

A theatre, film and sound production by Kabosh Artistic Director: Paula McFetridge & Video Designer: Conan McIvor

Written following his incarceration for homosexual offences, The Ballad of Reading Gaol evokes Wilde’s experience of imprisonment – the longing for that ‘little tent of blue which prisoners call the sky’, the slow death of hope and the loss of self.

118 years later and around the world men and women still set locks upon their lips and make their face a mask in fear of similar or worse fates. All for the sake of love.

In this immersive theatre experience we call upon the voices of the past to echo with our own, as we proclaim the fact of love as a human right, not the question of whose love is right.

As part of the inaugural Wilde Weekend, a week long festival dedicated to the work of Oscar Wilde, Kabosh staged a new production of The Ballad of Reading Gaol. Staged in the former Enniskillen prison, reimagined by the design of Liz Cullinane, James Doran and Frank McCusker brought the words of The Ballad of Reading Gaol to life, giving voice to one of Wilde’s most emotive pieces of work, through a mix of live theatre and bespoke recordings.

Conan McIvor’s unique video design evoked the myriad emotions the poem so poignantly captures and also the essence of the central question – who holds the rights to liberty.

Students from South West and Portora College alongside the Enniskillen based Caritas Choir crafted an immersive expeirence to transport the audience back in time to share in Wilde’s state of mind.

An insight into the creative genius of Wilde that goes beyond wit, to the heart of the human condition. Not to be missed.

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