Laois Youth Theatre

Laois Youth Theatre News

The Laois Youth Theatre perfrormance of 'Cherish', a tribute to the children who were killed during Easter week 1916. Held at Fitzmaurice Place, Portlaoise as part of the county's Centenary Commemoration Programme. Picture: Alf Harvey/ no reproduction fee

Youth Theatre workshops resumed after the summer break in a new venue; The Youth Education Centre, Railway St, Portlaoise. Weekly workshops run on Fridays on a school term basis for ages 12-14 from 5pm-6.30pm and for ages: 15-18 from 7pm-8.30pm Following very successful end of year performances at the Dunamaise Arts Centre, in July a small group of the members also presented CHERISH, a poignant performance tribute to the short lives of the children who perished during Easter week 1916 as partof the county’s Centenary Commemoration Programme.

In the production the group took a re-imagined glance back to catch the whispered echoes of these young lives that were so violently lost. Forty young girls and boys, aged 16 and under, whose lives and deaths, until recently, went unrecognised, whose bodies were largely buried in unmarked graves. Forty young children whose dreams and aspirations, whose august destinies, were squandered in the newly declared Republic…

CHERISH is a physical theatre piece that takes its inspiration from Joe Duffy’s book – “Children of the Rising” and was devised by the youth theatre during the summer two-week long drama workshop. The outdoor performance of CHERISH, directed by Siobhán Coffey, took place on Friday 29th July in Fitzmaurice Place, Portlaoise. One of the audience commented following the performance “there was a part when all fell silent but for the wind blowing the bunting and the quiet movement of the children – it was just magical.”

On foot of the CHERISH performance, Laois Youth Theatre have received an invitation from Youth Work Ireland to perform at a Youth Arts Showcase in the Autumn and Joe Duffy was busy tweeting about the performance and clips of the film can be seen on YouTube.

Established over twenty years , Laois Youth Theatre is a quality youth arts programme that supports opportunities and experiences for learning, creativity and developing skills. New members are always welcome to join.

Learn all about theatre, play games, get creative, see how to put on a show and how things run back stage while having fun, gaining confidence and making new friends. The weekly workshops cover all aspects of drama, including voice, movement, improvisation, physical theatre and performance skills. Laois Youth Theatre is affiliated to the National Association for Youth Drama, and members have the opportunity to network with Youth Theatres nationally and visit theatre shows.

Fee for the year is €100 and this can be paid in full or in two installments of €50, payable on the first day of term. Call now to book your place. Check out the latest news on our facebook page  More information T: 057 8664033/13


More info contact the Arts Office, Laois County Council, T: 057 8644033/13 or E:

Laois Youth Theatre ended the first term of 2016 with a thrilling celebration of youth theatre!JV8A2991

This year’s imaginative bunch of young people staged two plays at the Dunamaise Arts Centre on Saturday May 21st to a packed auditorium.

The talented 15-18yr olds presented WORD PLAY, an entertaining and intriguing show that they had written themselves and one that showcased the creative talent within the group. Following a series of writing workshops with drama and playwright, Michelle Read the group developed captivating monologues, letters and scenes taking us through a range of emotions, giving us glimpses into a strange new land where extravagant creatures such as space pirates, penny farthing enthusiasts, magical magic dogs and a superhero roam freely!

The equally talented 12-14yr olds presented Don’t Shoot the Messenger by John Morton. They delivered breath-taking performances in this play set on an island where all the adults have disappeared and there are only four families of children left.