Ham Sandwiches and Discipline

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31/07/2023 12:00


Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre

Sharing of work in progress by Nóra Ní Anluain Fay.

Choreographer Nóra Ní Anluain Fay grew up immersed in the GAA community, watching and taking part. For her residency at Uillinn (17 to 31 July) she seeks to create a duet with longtime collaborator Sorcha Murphy inspired by this experience.

She says ‘There often seems to be a wide gap between the realms of the arts and sports but having grown up with a mixture of both I want to try to combine them, which isn’t always done. There is also such a raw theatricality to sports and its spectators and clear dramaturgical lines to matches that I would adore to delve into. The rich culture that pours from the GAA is calling to be explored, from the ham sandwiches wrapped in tin foil, 30 jerseys hanging out to dry on the line, the sound of the soaking muddy stud boots, completely vexed commentators, screaming from the sidelines in the bitter cold to the ritualistic trips to Croke Park. The 70 minute structure of a match provides the perfect arc for a piece.

Nóra, a recent graduate from Fontys University Tilburg, the Netherlands, describes her practice as a bridge between dance and theatre, drawing from film, literature, music, dance and physical theatre. Her first choreographic work, Let Them Eat Cake, was chosen to represent the Netherlands in the Szoloduo Festival 2022 in Budapest.