Home » Arts & Culture » Four decades on, the Bull McCabe is set to rampage around the fields of Corofin in May
Eileen Lahiffe. Photograph by John Kelly

Four decades on, the Bull McCabe is set to rampage around the fields of Corofin in May

Over 40 years since its last presentation of John B Keane’s epic drama, Corofin Dramatic Society is putting the final touches to its 2024 production of The Field. Under the direction of John Clancy, the society will run with a string of six performances in Corofin Community Hall on May 11, 12, 13, 18, 19 and 20.
All performances will commence at 8pm.
Immortalised in Jim Sheridan’s 1990 film of the same name, which featured Richard Harris in the lead role of local tyrant, the Bull McCabe, The Field is one of Keane’s best known and most respected works.
The play takes its audiences deep into 1965 rural Ireland where they come face-to-face with the lust for land and the lengths to which some people will go to get what they want.
Set predominantly in the local pub of Carraigthomond, The Field is a story of greed and deceit; of abuse of power and complicity, and of the challenges faced by decent people in an atmosphere of cruelty, intimidation and fear.
“After a long absence, we are delighted to bring The Field back to Corofin,” reports Neil Haran, chairperson of the Society.
“Audiences love the work of John B and what better play to present than The Field?”
This is the first year in many that Corofin Dramatic Society did not participate in the annual Three-Act Drama Festival Circuit, which each year takes place during the spring.
Rather than sit back and enjoy a well earned rest, the society decided to use the opportunity to perform a play for local audiences, one that would encourage new members to join the group and try their hand at the various facets of amateur drama.
“One of the great joys of John B’s plays is that they tend to feature large casts,” said Neil.
“This has allowed us a wonderful opportunity to include a mix of seasoned performers on the one hand alongside several others who are taking to the stage for the very first time.
“It has been a real pleasure to welcome new members to the society.
“They have brought new energy to the group and we are so looking forward to seeing them take to the stage in front of local audiences.”
One of the 1983 cast members will also feature in this production. Over forty years on, Eileen Lahiffe, who for decades has wowed audiences in drama festivals the length and breadth of Ireland, will once again tread the boards in The Field, this time performing the role of widow, Maggie Butler, whose efforts to secure a good price for her property are thwarted by the Bull and his associates.
“We are blessed to have an excellent performance space in Corofin, alongside an eager production team and cast,” said Neil.
“Our audiences over the six nights will be well entertained and will be looked after very well.
“We really hope that the drama community, especially those that love the work of John B Keane, will turn out in large numbers to see our production.”

Further details are available on the Corofin Dramatic Society Facebook and Instagram pages.

About Andrew Hamilton

Andrew Hamilton is a journalist, writer and podcaster based in the west of Ireland.

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