A good week for the theatre business, as thousands of people have already attended the forty-one plays in the Dublin Theatre Festival's programme with sold out performances by Mick Lally and Agnes Bernelle.

The Dublin Theatre Festival is back this year after a year's hiatus due to financial reasons. With the box office bustling, RTÉ News reporter Maggie O’Kane spoke to some people on the streets of Dublin about the festival. Responses ranged from an enthusiastic 

I hope to get to four or five at least.

To those who would like to attend, but are unable to, 

I wouldn't mind going, but my husband doesn't fancy it at all.

I was reading the reviews...I can't afford to go, you know. Big family. Unemployed.

This year the festival is extending its remit to communities outside of the Dublin city area, in association with Dublin County Council’s Community Department. 'Yesterday’s Lovers’ a new play by Hugh Carr is will be staged in six locations County Dublin. Starring Mick Lally and Nuala Hayes, the play tells the story of an ill-fated couple and their relationship from the 1950s to the 1980s.  

Prior to tonight’s performance at Firhouse Community College at Firhouse in Tallaght, Mick Lally wonders if the play’s content has made audiences somewhat uncomfortable, as their reactions at times were not what the actors expected,  

They were inclined to be a bit embarrassed at the things that were being brought up in the play...the only response to that...is laughter I think, on a mass basis. 

This year’s festival took ten months of planning, and while success at an artistic level is important, festival director Lewis Cloughessy hopes that there will be some small financial gain too,  

If we don't lose too much, or if we break even, I'll be more than happy.

As this week’s plays went on stage, rehearsals were still ongoing for next week’s performances. ‘Doss House Waltz’ by Aodhán Madden will premiere at the Eblana Theatre. Directed by Gerry Stembridge, it stars Donal O'Kelly, Anna Manahan and Brendan Cauldwell as two barristers and an ageing prostitute who are down on their luck and squatting in an abandoned Dublin tenement. 

Another play currently in rehearsals is Agnes Bernelle’s late night one-woman show titled 'Father's Lying Dead On The Ironing Board'. A mix of satirical poems and songs from the cabarets of Berlin, it has the same title of her record which was produced by Elvis Costello last year. 

An RTÉ News report broadcast on 27 September 1985. The reporter is Maggie O’Kane.