A local drama group run at community education centre An Cosán, have dedicated their next show to a young local woman who passed away from cancer. Sarah Turtington Maher was a young mother who died in January of this year after a short battle with cancer.
Sarah was a member of the drama group for two years and just after her first show she was diagnosed with cancer. In between treatments, operations and chemo she attended class where she felt it was the only time her illness could be transcended according to Ciara Roche, Drama Tutor & Director of the group.
Ciara said :
“The support and friendships given so freely in the group meant that she rarely felt alone or indeed was alone in hospital. Her husband brought her from Tallaght hospital for the night of our last show. Sarah spent most of her last months in hospital but that didn’t stop her from being an integral member of our group.”
Last November the group hosted a coffee morning in aid of cancer research and a lot of past and present participants attended with €500 being raised in total. Unfortunately it was the last time Sarah was allowed out of hospital and passed away a few weeks later and four of the drama girls sang all her favourite songs at her funeral.
Ciara has facilitated the Drama Class in An Cosán for the past 15 years. Each September a group of new participants sign up to reconnect with their creative self and to challenge themselves to try something new. This year the group will perform a show called Scene Stealers which they will dedicate to Sarah.
Ciara says that through the dramatic process participants can discover their creativity, build confidence in their abilities thereby raising self esteem and personal efficacy which in turn impacts positively on their immediate community and the community as a whole.
The participants decide in early January whether they would like to produce a show and Ciara says it is a time filled with excitement and trepidation, as most participants have never acted before but discover a new found confidence.
“Throughout the month of January, material was devised for the current production by participants and scripted by our very talented team, Sindy McCormack, Trish Nugent and Cian O’Ceallachain. Together we have produced a collection of scripts for the drama group’s show which demonstrates the positive strength and heart of the community of Tallaght. The material is original providing social commentaries on real life events that have happened to people in the group. We don’t dwell on the heavy stuff but use humour to tackle issues life has thrown our way.”
The production consists of a number of short vignettes, each of which highlights the importance of solidarity and friendship in overcoming adversity. Ciara says that the rehearsals are “going great” and that the group is focused and excited about showcasing their talents. The show will take place in RUA RED on Thursday May 26th with two shows, the first at 7pm and the second at 8.30pm.
Tickets are €10 with all proceeds collected going to An Cosán Educational Project – who provide a path to learning, leadership and enterprise in the community.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the performers and backstage crew for their commitment and their creativity that took us from page to stage. Also, to An Cosan, without this wonderful organisation we would never have had the opportunity to display our individual talents and to take this inspiring and exhilarating journey. Finally, to all our family and friends, without your support and encouragement the road would have been much longer.”
For more information on tickets and the show, please contact An Cosán by phone on 01 462 8488 or by email on [email protected]