Q&A with playwright Carol Doey

Photo by Aaron McCracken/Harrison Photography
Photo by Aaron McCracken/Harrison Photography

Can you recall your first appearance at the Burnavon?

I remember it well...April 2001 I was in a play called the Easter Story. It was my first time on any stage. I played the wife of the good thief. My friend said I played my part so well she forgot it was me. I knew I would be on the stage again.

Of the many plays you have written which is your favourite?

Fair Play Te Ye will always be my baby...but Don’t Die Wonderin’ was a great show to be part of.

Where do you find the time to write?

When you are passionate about something you will always find the time. My problem is that I try to squeeze too much into my 24 hours.

If you could take a story and adapt it for the stage, what would it be and why?

My dream would be to adapt the song Fairy Tale of New York, Shane McGowan and Kirsty McColl’s big hit, or The Bucket List...two heart wrenching thought provoking stage plays by Carol Doey...sounds good?

How did you meet Jimmy Cowan?

I knew Jimmy from years back, and that he was an ‘oul han’ on the stage, and when I realised people loved Fair Play Te Ye I really wanted him to see it and I suppose give his approval. He came backstage after the show and approved. Our second run Jimmy was in it...and the rest is history.

Tell me who will be performing this year at Carol and Jimmy’s Beach Party, what should we be look out for?

Friday (June 1) - Pamela Ballantine and Olivia Nash will be guests on our show. I performed with the girls in the Vagina Monologues and got to love them for their support and encouragement but mostly for being genuine, honest and fun loving. When I asked them to be our guests they didn’t hesitate, I can guarantee a good night’s entertainment, I met up with the girls for a meal and a show after the Vagina monologues and we laughed much. Be prepared for open discussions about whatever topic arises, and see how comfortable they are in our company. These girls may well be celebrities of the stage and screen but have kept their feet firmly on the ground and have a great connection with their audiences, which is why they are immensely popular and much loved.

Saturday (June 2) - our guests are two judges from Stewartstown Harps’ Strictly Come Dancing...Eileen Logan a former Miss Northern Ireland, and Sean Quinn a.k.a. Clitheroe. I purposely asked the two of them to join me because of the rapport we had on the judging panel, Clitheroe being quick witted and a great storyteller and Eileen, the epitome of elegance and good taste...and then me. We have an exciting and eclectic mix of performers. It’s the first time ever we have dancers from Strictly, our very own Hilary and Partner, and Kevin Lowe, Stewartstown’s butcher boy and his partner Aisling. Our choreographer Chris Cross will also perform with his partner - this is not to be missed. Our singers include the wonderful Mark Casey, the very talented Chelsea Chambers, superb Ryan and Tony, Jarlath, Karl McGuckian, and many more special entertainers including local comedian Cookie O’Donnell. Special guest will be Liam Ryan a.k.a. Elvis and there will also be a couple of buskers and a surprise or two.