G are St Lazare Players Ireland’s production of Moby Dick, currently touring the USA as part of Imagine Ireland, has brought Youghal, Co. Cork and New Bedford, Massachusetts into a sister-city programme. At a reception in New Bedford held jointly by the Zeiterion Theatre and The New Bedford Whaling Museum, Mayor Scott Lang of New Bedford invited Youghal to become a sister city with his own. During a week of Moby Dick related events inspired by the Cork theatre company’s visit, former Mayor of Youghal, Oliver Casey,was the guest of honour as the two fishing-port communities shared their Moby Dick heritage.
Youghal served as the location for the Massachusetts whaling capital during John Huston’s 1954 filming of Moby Dick starring Gregory Peck. Gare St Lazare chose to mark the link by premiering their stage production there in 2009. Now during a 10 city tour of the USA they have hailed their visit to New Bedford as a highlight. “The twinning of the two towns is a perfect legacy not only of our production but also of Imagine Ireland.” Said actor Conor Lovett who performs the show. “Imagine Ireland is a seed which will ultimately be judged by the fruit it bears.”
Gare St Lazare Players already premiered this year at Kilkenny Arts Festival their newest work, written especially for the company by New York playwright Will Eno. The play, Title and Deed, will receive its US premiere at The Signature Theater on 42nd street in May 2012. “We are thrilled that a major American playwright has written a new work for an Irish company”, said director Judy Hegarty Lovett. “This and the New Bedford/Youghal connection are a great start to the legacy of Imagine Ireland.”
“Culture Ireland’s year-long intiative in the USA is about partnerships that will endure.” Said Oliver Casey, “Ireland partnering with America, Gare St Lazare with Signature Theater, writer Will Eno with actor Conor Lovett, Zeiterion Theater with New Bedford Whaling Museum and Youghal with New Bedford.”
Moby Dick continues to tour this week in Boston and next week in New London, Connecticut then on to Burlington and St Johnsbury, Vermont. Gare St Lazare have performed at more US venues in 2011 than any other Irish theatre company.
- 11 November 2011