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Glowworm

Show:    'Glowworm' by Tom Nieboer

Venue:   Project Art Centre / Project Cube

Run:       10th - 17th Sept 2016

Role:      Production Designer

 

 By the fountain at the edge of the Oxborough Gardens, an existential crisis is sparked by a midnight encounter with a glowworm. Zelle De Brulle, an adolescent insect collector, becomes awakened to a universe of possibility and discovers what it really means to be alive.

The show we set out to make is a visual storytelling performance, where text meets design, movement, and music. In the intimate environment of Uncle BugBoy’s laboratory, our entomologist narrators bring the audience on a sensory journey, creating visual spectacles and private recognitions in a life-and-death drama about learning how to shine.

Our three narrators transform into multiple characters within the story, creating environments and soundscapes, manipulating objects, materials, light and puppets to bring the world of Zelle de Brulle off the page. We are exploring transformative movement and dynamic materials in order to combine multiple storytelling tools in one performance.

Creative team

Director - Davey Kelleher

Production Design - Hanna Bowe

Writer - Tom Nieboer

Sound Design - Dylan Tonge Jones

Performers

Julie Maguire

Maria Guiver

Conor O'Riordan

Reviews

11 Sep 2016

The Irish Times

Glowworm is an artistically ambitious and thoroughly charming coming-of-age tale from Umbrella Theatre, which uses traditional storytelling techniques, puppetry and object theatre to tell its unusual tale. One of the best scenes features a conversation between a teapot, a silver sugar bowl and a pair of China cups.

10 Sep 2016

The Arts Review

With ‘Glowworm’ as their premiere production, Umbrella Theatre Project have left their calling card, announcing themselves as serious theatre makers for the future. Built from a collective from the Lir Academy’s international MFA programme, the infrastructure seems to be there for them to go on to even bigger things. Indeed, a quarter of their programme is dedicated to thanking their many supporters. Whatever the future holds, right now, with ‘Glowworm,’ Umbrella Theatre Project have a little gem on their hands. So be advised, young or old, don't tell anyone about this show until you've bought at least two tickets for yourself. For ‘Glowworm’ is one of those shows you’ll most certainly want to see twice.

11 Sep 2016

The Reviews Hub

In the charming setting of William Charles Bugboy De Brulle’s laboratory (brilliantly created under production designer Hanna Bowe) the three actors, Julie Maguire, Conor O’Riordan and Maria Guiver, adeptly bring a host of vibrant characters to life as they try to understand why Zelle does not put the Glow-worm in “the killing jar” and pin it to her corkboard like all of her other specimens. As they do so, the audience is guided through Zelle’s experiences of growing up in a reserved Victorian household, her friendship with her uncle, her solitary schooldays, a bizarre encounter in an elderflower thicket, and the other joys and difficulties she found in growing up.

11 Sep 2016

No More Workhorse

The tale itself is quite fanciful and features a number of incidents between our hero Zelle and her eccentric family and class mates. It is set in an imaginative world and has a jolly hockey sticks view of pre-war England and the Oxborough academy. The art design is very impressive and the whole production looks great, adding an air of sophistication to proceedings. 

10 Sep 2016

Musings in Intermission

Saving face requires soft lines, un-fussed and demure, such as that of the puppet in Hanna Bowe’s wonderful production design. Internal and personal lives are more chaotic, and fleshed out here by a capable cast. A bragging uncle, impossibly well-connected, is given good bravado by Conor O’Riordan, while Maria Guiver makes a radical schoolgirl fantastically creepy. The frightened negotiations of Zelle’s social life are often judged by Julie Maguire, sharp as a tack. 

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Nominated for

Dublin Tiger Fringe Best Design Award

and Bewley’s Café Theatre Little Gem Award

Sneak peak
Rehearsal
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Images provided by Ste Murray (www.ste.ie)

Natural History Museum
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Images provided by Ste Murray (www.ste.ie)

Production Images
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Images provided by Keith Dixon (www.keithdixonphotography.com)

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