Local actor Chris Grant says he is really excited to bring a production of Mojo Mickybo to Banbridge this week, which will raise funds for a cause close to his heart.
The Annaclone man will tread the boards as Mojo, in Owen McCafferty’s fabulous tale, Mojo and Mickybo, at the Iveagh Cinema, Banbridge on Wednesday (June 10), directed by David Grant.
The performance has been organised to raise funds for Annaclone Youth Club, which Chris himself attended from he was eight years old, and then volunteered at until his studies at Queen’s University meant he was too busy to continue his work there.
Chris said: “The show is myself as Mojo and Seamus O’Hara as Mickybo. We performed this show two years ago, but we have both matured as actors and people.
“The show is totally different, if you’ve seen it before, it’s totally different, it’s a far higher standard now.
“We performed it at the Lyric in February and it was sold out beforehand, it’s the only show this year that has done that.
“We’re working with a new production company, Bedlam Theatre Company, which is run by Stephen Coulter and Bronagh McFeely.
“They worked in New Zealand and have come back here and started this company so we are employing some different techniques they found in New Zealand.
“Mary McCartan from the Annaclone Youth Club saw the show at the Lyric and asked me if we’d perform it for the club. I jumped at the chance.
“I said there was absolutely no doubt about it.
“I told Mary, you tell me when and where and I’ll do the show.
“I came up through the youth club from I was eight until I was about 12. Unfortunately, the club stopped for a while but then when the Rural Regeneration Committee started uo in 2008 or 2009 there was a resurgance of people wanting to volunteer at the club.
“Fortunately, there were people like Mary who said, ‘Let’s do it’.
“The club is all volunteer based, the work is done out of the goodness of people’s hearts. People who are wanting to see the place come alive.
“I was a volunteer for a year during university.
“Unfortunately I had to pull out because I was so busy at University and I didn’t want to let anyone at the club down by saying I couldn’t be there.
“The youth club gives young people a place to go to meet friends, outside of school.
“The money will allow the club to take the kids on trips, without asking parents for money.
“It’s difficult for club’s to get money with the state the country is in.
“I’m sure the club would love to take the kids to the theatre or museums, and this is a really good way for people to support the club.
“Do come and see the show, because it’s a brilliant show.
“I’m so happy doing what I love and that I can help out the youth club. I wouldn’t be where I am without them. I know that sounds Hallmark, but I do believe that. They gave me the confidence to try different things.
“If you’re not sport inclined, they let kids excell in other areas.
“They gave me the confidence to become an actor. They support each other and everybody can flourish together.
“I would urge the people of Banbridge to go along. It’s a good night out, we’ve given something that people would pay for normally, without helping a cause.
“There are 190 seats at the Iveagh and we would like to sell all the tickets, so please come and support it.
“I’m really excited, I adore my job,” Chris said.
Tickets are available at the Iveagh Cinema or contact Trisha on 07957860463, Mary on 07747102522 or Bronagh on 07895199540.