Well, what else can be said? She Kills Monsters has reached its curtain call and all that is left is for us to express our gratitude to everyone who breathed life into it.
First and foremost, the directing team. Dave McGowan and Krate Cosgraveset the tone from day one, handling the mammoth task of bringing this production to stage with aplomb and grace, shouldering all the nerves and strain that goes with any endeavor of this magnitude with a remarkably steady hand and a soft eye. Thank you for inviting us all along on this incredible voyage. We always knew you were going to kill it, but never in our wildest dreams could we have hoped for this.
Dave Tiberius Curran production manager extraordinaire, oversaw the largest production in No Drama’s history and made it look a hell of a lot easier than it was, ensuring every member of the team had their say and knew what was needed of them for us to survive to the next level. This production required coordination from every member of its team and it couldn’t have operated as well as it did without its gentle maestro navigating us through some choppy currents.
It has become a cliche to state that Louise Dunne surpassed her own remarkable standard this production, but there are no other words to describe the immensity of the shift Cavan’s finest export put in. From conjuring dragons and beholders, to keeping the backstage engine room ticking over seamlessly, she is truly a wonder and we count our stars every day in thanks that we can rely on her to pull off the impossible. That poster is the work of a genius, the puppets that of a master or a mad woman, probably both.
Baz O’Donovan took timber, screws, paints and lino and built a world for us to not only tell a story, but to bring it to life, while always ensuring the safety of our actors. From across the mountain of steepness to castle of evil and everything in between, thank you. We are delighted to have Baz back in our ranks and assure you we will not be letting him go so easily this time.
Sara Ben-Abdallah a professional in the best sense of the word. She had our complete trust from the moment she walked into our first production meeting and exceeded every expectation we could have held, not only making our cast look utterly bewitching, but also capable of pulling off full costume changes at the turn of a coin. We know every cast member is thankful beyond words for the hard work she has put in and the memories she has left them with. We all look forward to the next time we get to see you play dress up. A big thank you to our resident greek goddess Alexandra Stamati for pitching in with some key stitches when needed!
Peter Blennerhassett undertook the task of keeping a furiously paced and intricately complicated play on the tracks and turned what could have been an ordeal for any mere mortal into a living, breathing ideal of what a stage manager could be. He kept other heads cool when the Dragonfire was lit under our ass and made every person lucky enough to work under him understand how much they were appreciated in whatever task they were given and dedicated much of his weekends to helping Louise maintain what is left of her sanity.
Bucky Emmerling and James M. O’Connor, our light and sound designers, charted out a visual and audio treat for the senses, that not only made the play flow seamlessly from scene to scene, but soaring through the sky on a beautiful grungey rainbow. You took the vast expanse of the main stage of Smock Alley and ensured we got the best of every inch of it.
Barbara Szilágyi, Kornél Hamula and Elaine Carroll our magnificent makeup and props masters, looked after all the details with incredible care, bringing love and attention to the minutiae of each character’s look to really bring them to life. You ladies well and truly rock, we are so glad you were part of our team.
Emma Breadman and Renée van de Schoor, for all their hard work and dedication in running events and PR to ensure the word about this adventure got out into the public domain, not only early but prominently. You ladies are the reason we were able to fill out such a large theatre with a captive audience.
Corinna Ono and Helen McGrath operated the light and sound desk and made one of the most intricate aspects of the show seem simple. We would like to extend the heartiest thanks to them for taking on what every difficult and challenging task we could throw at them with relish.
Jay Cosgrave choreographed our fights, armed our actors and kept them safe every step, pivot, and thrust of the way. It couldn’t have happened without you. We wish we could compile and dedicate to you the gasps from the audience, the shrieks at the neck snapping and the very uncomfortable crossing of male legs. Philip Arneill captured on camera so much of what of made this production so very very special and we cannot wait to spend hours pouring over the memories. The most streamlined headshot session No Drama has ever seen. For that gentlemen, and so much more, we are truly in your debt. Songs of your great deeds will be sung around our campfires for years to come.
You might never have seen them but we had an army of stagehands and helpers taking up arms each and every night to hold us back from chaos. Enya Reilly, Gidget Reilly, Gülşah Erdiç, Shane McGlynn, Nikhil Dubey, Deirbhile Brogan Roisin Cogan, Sorcha, Mary, Stephanie and Eva Van de Schoorthank you so much for your hard work each and every show. We are all eternally grateful for your contribution.
Our front of house was operated by Roisin, Rory Kennedy, Sorcha and Nikhil, they got every evening off to a great start for all our audience and we would like to thank them for being such wonderful greeters.
Special thanks as always to Alan Rogers for helping shoot the promotional video and Declan Vincent Ryan for making the get in and out not only possible but as relatively painless as could be asked for. We might sometimes take for granted that we can depend on you to see us through each production, but not on a week like this one.
A humongous thank you to Smock Alley Theatre for letting us into their wonderful space. We could have never put this production on anywhere else. Smock Alley Theatre will always be our home away from Synge Street and we thank your entire crew for allowing us the opportunity to play in your beautiful theatre.
The Cast. What can we say about the cast that has not already been said? You had us rolling in the aisles one moment, while shedding tears seconds later, not just on stage but from the auditions onwards. It would be an insult to the collective nature of the piece to give you individual praise, so Ellen Nolan , Jessy Danner, Darcy Fever, Matthew James Heywood, Martin, Renée, Erin Barclay, Aaron Fever, Tamryn Robyn Reinecke, Matthew Whitehead, Tonya Swayne, thank you from the bottom of our wrenched Hearts. You are superstars each and every one of you. You paid back all the months and months of planning and hard work we had invested in this play with interest and then some. We cannot wait to see where you each go from here, now that this quest has been completed, but we promise we will be front row center to witness it first hand. Thank you for being a party like no other.
Finally, and most importantly you, the audience. All this dedication, sweat (so much sweat) and tears would have come to nought if we did not have an appreciative audience to witness the fruits of our labor. We got that and then some. Thank you for coming. Thank you for making this the highest selling No Drama production in our 10-year history, even with a heat wave and world cup competing for attention. Thank you for the kind words. Thank you for listening to what he had to say. See you for the next one.
It wouldn’t be a She Kills Monsters post without a contrived Dungeons and Dragons reference or two. We rolled the dice, crossed our fingers and it came up a natural 20. Thanks to Tymora for that one.
All of our love to you, from us at No Drama Theatre.
Jonathan Shortall – The Proudest Chairman in the World