The 62nd RTÉ All-Ireland Drama Festival gets underway today in the Dean Crowe Theatre in Athlone and runs until Friday, May 9th.
The nine-day festival will see the top nine amateur groups nationally compete for the All-Ireland title as well as a number of other major acting and technical awards.
This year’s competition will see performances from the Ballyduff Drama Group, the Ballyshannon Drama Society, Cornmill Theatre Group, the Nenagh Players, The Moat Club in Naas, The Thurles Drama Group, the Bradán Players, the Prosperous Dramatic Society and the Wexford Drama Group.
The competition continues it long association with RTÉ which will see the newly-introduced RTÉ Fair City Award which will be presented to a single actor deemed to have had an outstanding performance during the course of the Festival.
The winner will go on to take a screen test for a potential role on Ireland’s most popular drama Fair City and will spend time working behind the scenes on the programme.
In addition each of the competing groups have been mentored by well-known RTÉ faces and voices with Miriam O’Callaghan, Derek Mooney, Ronan Collins and Seán O’Rourke all taking part.
All Ireland Drama Festival Director Joe MacCarrick said: “We’re so pleased to be working with RTÉ again for our 62nd Festival and to once more benefit from the invaluable sponsorship afforded the All-Ireland Drama Festival. Each year, we strive to improve on that which went before and I believe that this year, with the introduction of the Mentor Scheme, our theatre groups, as well as legions of theatre-goers, can look forward to perhaps the most exciting celebration of top-class drama to date”
Keep checking in with RTÉ Ten over the coming days for regular updates from the Festival.