Two Irishmen and the birth of Canada

Brick Wall Theatre to perform Blood On The Moon as part of Galway Theatre Festival

James Patrick Whelan, the Galwayman accused of the execution of fellow Irishman and leading Canadian politician Thomas D’Arcy McGee.

James Patrick Whelan, the Galwayman accused of the execution of fellow Irishman and leading Canadian politician Thomas D’Arcy McGee.

THE GALWAYMAN, who assassinated the Louth man who was turning Canada from a series of provinces and into a nation, will be the subject of a new play at this year's Galway Theatre Festival.

Thomas D’Arcy McGee, Irish rebel leader turned politician, is shot on at 2am on April 7 1868 in Ottawa. James Patrick Whelan, Galway-born and a fellow Irish immigrant, is accused of the crime and sentenced to death. However, questions about whether Whelan was actually guilty persist, as his trial suffered from political interference, dubious legal procedures, allegations of bribing witnesses, and discredited testimony.

In Blood On The Moon, Whelan's ghost stalks the streets of Ottawa, determined to prove his innocence and rewrite the history books. The play will be performed by Canadian actor Jérémie Cyr-Cooke of Brick Wall Theatre at the O'Donoghue Theatre, NUI Galway, on Tuesday April 18 and Wednesday 19, at 1pm and 7pm. Cyr-Cooke will perform Whelan, and 17 other characters, in a show that blends physical theatre and storytelling, and highlights the very neglected role the Irish played in the birth of the Canadian nation.

Tickets are €14/10/8 through www.galwaytheatrefestival.com

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