Athlone Musical Society cast await opening performance of Chess at Dean Crowe Theatre

Members of the Athlone Musical Society female ensemble pictured during rehearsals for Chess which opens in the Dean Crowe Theatre on Friday night, March 3

Members of the Athlone Musical Society female ensemble pictured during rehearsals for Chess which opens in the Dean Crowe Theatre on Friday night, March 3

Athlone Musical Society take to the stage with their production of CHESS, in the Dean Crowe Theatre from Friday, March 3 to Saturday, March 11.

Set in the 1980s, CHESS is a much-loved and highly acclaimed musical that uses the ancient and distinguished game as a metaphor for romantic rivalries and East-West political intrigue. From Tyrol to Thailand, we follow grandmasters, their lovers, politicians, CIA and KGB, as they plot, scheme and make their moves to the pulse of a monumental rock score. Several numbers, including "One Night in Bangkok" and "I Know Him So Well", are well-known international hits.

The Society is proud to have an award-winning production team in place, led by Director Alfie Kilduff, Musical Director Ger Madden, and Choreographer Jay Molyneux. A ten-piece orchestra and a cast of over 50 will bring the outstanding musical score of Abba’s Benny Andersson and Björn Ulvaeus to life.

Chairperson Joan Larkin is very enthused with how the preparations are going.

“We are in the final week or so of rehearsals and it is now full steam ahead to have everything in place for the opening night. Our cast and crew are working really hard to make sure the show is unforgettable, We had a very successful show last year with “All Shook Up”, which won five awards at AIMS, and we are looking forward to emulating that success with CHESS, which is a fantastic musical," Joan stated.

Joan went on to mention all those who make the show possible.

“We want to thank all our sponsors and patrons; without whose support we could not bring the production to stage. The show is for the audience and so we look forward to welcoming audiences to the wonderful surrounds of the Dean Crowe Theatre for show week, staring on Friday, March 3, at 8pm," Joan added.

Frederick Trumper the American Grandmaster is played by Derek Collins, who has been involved in musical theatre since he made his stage debut at age seven in “A Muppet Show Musical!”. Lead roles in “Fiddler on the Roof” and “Michael Collins, A Musical Drama” to name but two have followed. Derek hails from Dublin but has recently moved to the Midlands and is excited to take to the stage in Athlone in March.

Former “You’re a Star” winner Lucia Evans is set to grace the stage as Florence. Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Lucia came to Ireland at 19 and now lives in Galway. Following her success with You’re a Star she went on to release an acclaimed album “Natural Woman”. Athlone Musical Society first welcomed Lucia to stage in 2015 when she in “Hairspray”, to rave reviews and an AIMS nomination for Best Female Singer. It is fantastic to welcome her once more to Athlone.

The role of Anatoly will be played by multi AIMS award winner Shane Kelly. A Galway native, Shane is no stranger to Athlone, having played Jesus in the Society’s 2018 production of 'Jesus Christ Superstar', as well as Dennis in last season’s award-winning production of “All Shook Up!”

He will be joined on stage by Emily Lohan in the role of Svetlana. Another familiar face in musical circles – though it is her first show with Athlone Musical Society – Emily’s previous roles include Florence (CHESS ), Nellie (Jekyll and Hyde ) Kitty Kiernan (Michael Collins, A Musical Drama ).

Supporting the leads are the talented Joe Steiner as Molokov, Kieran Kilduff as Walter, Paul Holloway as the Mayor and Kori Kilduff as Arbiter. The production team also cast an impressive male and female ensemble and choir, bringing past and new members on board for what promises to be a magnificent production, coming to the Dean Crowe Theatre in March.

Tickets are available now from the Theatre on or through the Box office on 090 6492129 (Mon to Fri 12pm to 3pm )

The show runs from Friday, March 3rd to Saturday, March 11th. There is no show on Monday, 6th and Tuesday, 7th of March


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