Pictured: Myles Breen, Sabina Coyne, President Michael D Higgins and Liam O’Brien, director.
Myles Breen has been awarded Best Actor at Origin’s 1st Irish Festival
Limerick actor Myles Breen has been awarded Best Actor at a New York Theatre festival this week.
The local actor won the award at Origin’s 1st Irish Festival, established and run by Limerick man George C Heslin, where he showcased his hit one-man play Language UnBecoming A Lady.
The play, which premiered in Manhattan’s Cell Theatre in September, is a Bottom Dog Theatre Company production, written and performed solely by Breen and directed by fellow Limerick man, Liam O’Brien.
President Michael D Higgins attended the awards ceremony, in a show of support for Irish theatre abroad.
The play tells the story of Robert, an Irish drag queen, set in a dressing room, reflecting on life and dealing with being gay in Ireland during a period of little acceptance in Ireland.
Loosely based on Breen’s own experiences with growing up gay in Ireland, there are many similarities. Breen spoke about its reception in America, saying he is “excited to see what their reaction is to it, because it tells a very Irish version of gay rights, I suppose, and gay liberation, which would be very different in America.
“So to see how things worked here and worked there, will be interesting to see what it is like,” he said.
The production has received rave reviews over the years, travelling to audiences nationwide
The five-week festival, now in its eighth year, was founded as a “gateway to America for modern European theatre.”
The annual event has succeeded in linking Irish and American culture, with seven mainstage plays being performed, ranging from areas, such as Belfast, Dublin, Limerick, and New York.
Recognising the gap, Heslin made efforts to broaden the platforms available to European playwrights and actors,
“In 2002, I saw that there was a lot of contemporary theatre in New York. The company’s mission is to launch European playwrights in America,” he said.
Visit Origin’s 1st Irish Festival website here
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Visit the Bottom Dog Theatre Company website here
Check out the Bottom Dog Theatre Facebook page here and Twitter here