A live performance @ Waterford Museum of Treasures, Choristers’ Hall.
Performance is durational and looped. Those who wish to attend arrive at any time and for any length of time between X and X.
Performance artist Amanda Coogan and collaborators join in the rediscovery of Irish playwright Teresa Deevy, in The Possession Project.
Possession is a living installation focusing on the female figure and the ideas of re-discovery of lost female stories and artwork. The performance, as part of this year’s Imagine Festival, combines performance art and theatre practice; performed in the atmospheric and evocative setting of the Chorister’s Hall in Ireland’s finest medieval museum, Waterford’s Museum of Treasures, the performance will be uniquely special.
Teresa Deevy was a playwright who wrote vividly for and about women in the Ireland of the 1930s. She was also deaf. Collaborating with Deaf artists Lianne Quigley and Alvean Jones, Coogan explores Deevy’s unpublished script Possession, a ballet treatment. Deevy’s script for Possession is short—only three pages in total—and presents an outline of the story of the Táin told from Queen Maeve’s perspective. Irish Sign Language is the key choreographic tool.
Describing The Possession Project Coogan says ‘Deevy takes a woman’s view of the story of the Táin and we are reading and creating it through our collective knowledge and understanding of Teresa Deevy’s work and her interests. The intersecting layers of knowledge, understanding and interpretation makes the project rich and exciting to work on.’
Coogan, Quigley and Jones are joined by staff and students of the Theatre Studies department of the South East Technical University (SETU): the company will occupy the medieval chambers of the Chorister’s Hall in the Waterford Treasures Museum.
Coogan, Jones and Quigley have been developing the Possession Project with SETU over 9 months supported by Irish Sign Language translators Caoimhe Coburn Gray and Elżbieta Cichocka. Deevy’s work is the focus of scholarship and research of SETU lecturers Dr Úna Kealy and Dr Kate McCarthy supported by SETU colleagues Dr Jenny O’Connor and Deirdre Grant. SETU Theatre Studies students have participated in the devising process over the last 9 months and have performed with Coogan in The Hugh Lane Gallery in June.
The project is funded by the SETU, Diversity and Inclusion and Research Connexions funds and the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning, Student Partnership and Raising Capacity (SPARC) fund.