AMONG THE attractions at next week’s Bulmers Galway Comedy Festival is the comic play Who Needs Enemies? by Galway author Conor Montague.
The play introduces us to Galwegian hell-raiser Eoin Hancock who has just returned from a retreat in the Himalayan wilderness. Determined to escape a destructive lifestyle, he knows his loyal friends must be the first casualty on his pathway to cleanliness.
Unfortunately, those closest to him won’t be discarded that easily. Late one Saturday night, Eoin’s friends arrive unannounced and uninvited to gradually chip away at his resistance, harassing him incessantly in the sanctuary of his own home as he struggles to remain sober.
His sitting room becomes increasingly chaotic as the night progresses, becoming a microcosm of the cocaine-fuelled, hedonistic, Ireland that Eoin is attempting to leave behind.
“It’s a comedic treatment of a tragedy,” author Montague observes. “The main character is battling addictions; he’s trying to get off drink and drugs but his problem is you can’t take them off your friends.
“The humour in the play stems from he has been six weeks clean but he has all these friends arrive in on him who drag him back to square one. It’s partly inspired by time I spent working in the clubbing industry.”
Montague is a graduate of the MA writing programme at NUI, Galway, and a member of The Atlantis Collective, a group that has published two collections of short fiction over the past couple of years.
Who Needs Enemies? features an all-Galway cast, which includes well-known comedian John Donnellan, and actors Ray Kelly, Mark Dooley, Ciara Brady, Roland Mupotsa, and John Lally. Directorial duties for the four-night run will be covered by Conor’s fellow MA writing graduate, and Atlantis Collective colleague, Dara O’Foglú.
A one-act production of Who Needs Enemies? enjoyed a tremendous reaction when first performed at the Jerome Hynes Memorial Series at NUIG in March, which led to its commission by the Bulmers Galway Comedy Festival.
Audiences can look forward to an hour of on-stage mayhem as tragic hero Eoin Hancock attempts to deal with the substance abuse, irrational violence, and sexual deviance his good friends bring to any occasion.
Who Needs Enemies? runs from Thursday October 21 to Sunday 24 at 9pm at the Town Hall Studio. Admission €8/10. Tickets are available from the Town Hall on 091 - 569777.