Kerry’s Amateur Dramatic Heritage


Local Listowel Drama Collection

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Given the difficulties with accessioning at the time, much of the material is of unknown provenance.

The order is numerical.

The Collection consists of newspaper clippings, photographs of productions, posters and programmes.

The collection varies significantly in terms of production dates. It includes details – clippings, programmes, posters – dating from prizewinning productions in the 1950s, through to the 1960s and 1970s, which includes memorabilia from Listowel Drama Group productions through to the 1990s and the early 2000s.

Newspaper clippings consist of local and national broadsheet articles.

It includes some materials used by actors that are on exhibition in the John B. Keane room.

A significant donation by My. John Cahill, of an original 1959 script of Sive is also contained in this collection. Mr. Cahill was one of the cast.

It includes a typescript copy of Bryan MacMahon’s The Bugle in the Blood.

KWM.2016.0002          Newspaper clippings on Playboy of the Western World drama.

KWM.2016.0005          Photograph, colour of Listowel Drama Group

KWM.2016.0006          Programme, theatre, The Moonlighters, George Fitzmaurice.

KWM.2016.0007          Programme, theatre, The Bugle in the Blood, Brian McMahon.

KWM.2016.0068          Sive for Abbey Theatre article on first production.

KWM.2016.0069          Article on All-Ireland Drama Festival, May 8th 1954.

KWM.2016.0070          Article on the Drama Council of Ireland, May 21st 1955.

KWM.2016.0071          Newspaper cutting, District Justice wins best actor.

KWM.2016.0072          Abbey Fantasia on Rural Life, Article, Daily Mail, 1953.

KWM.2016.0073         Periodical, Results of All-Ireland Drama, 1st place, The Magic Glasses.

This was the Listowel Group’s first title in the one-act category and Directed by Brendan Carroll.

KWM.2016.0074          Awards in one-act category, First place Listowel D.G., The Magic Glasses.

KWM.2016.0075          Periodical, Article on Scariff, Co. Clare to build a theatre.

KWM.2016.0076          Periodicals, Bachelors in Twilight, Herald Newspaper, 1953.

KWM.2016.0077          Periodicals, Irish Times, 1953, Review of play M.J. Molloy, The Wood of the Whispering.

KWM.2016.0078          Periodicals, Evening Press 1955, Amateurs should experiment more.

KWM.2016.0079          Periodicals, Review, Sive, Play performance article 1959.

KWM.2016.81.01         Periodicals, Schedule for All-Ireland Amateur Drama Festival, Athlone. These 2 articles were written following John B. Keane’s success in 1959.

KWM.2016.81.02         Periodicals, An Tóstal Drama Festival, list of productions.

KWM.2016.0082          Periodicals, Niall Carroll on theatre’s amateurs and a workshop Thomas                                                     MacAnna.

KWM.2016.0083          Periodicals, List of awards, first place Listowel Dram Group The Magic Glasses, 1954.

KWM.2016.0084          Periodicals, Western Drama Festival Awards, 1954.

KWM.2016.0085          Periodicals, Mention of Listowel Drama Group production The Paddy Pedlar in 1953. This was one of the first amateur productions of the play.

KWM.2016.0086          Periodicals, For the play Red Owen, colour scene was Connemara.

KWM.2016.0087          Periodicals, Irish Independent, April 1960, positive review of The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0088          Periodicals, Evening Press Article, critical review of Sive by J.B. Keane                                      1960.

KWM.2016.0089          Periodicals, Kerryman Newspaper, The Golden Folk sparkled at Cork                                           Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0090          Periodicals, Irish IndependentViews differ on Sive, April 1960.

KWM.2016.0091          Periodicals, Evening Herald, 1960, MacMahon play, ‘mystery of first act                                   coughing.’

KWM.2016.0092          Photograph Black/White, Young girl on a swing.

KWM.2016.0093          Irish Times, 1960, positive review of play The later days are cold, by unknown playwright thought to be from Listowel.

To correct the accession entry, this play was by Colman O’Shannon, a pseudonym for a Fr. O’Keeffe. The play, a one-act, was a very popular one on the circuit and performed on the circuit by Kerry groups, including Brosna and Asdee Players.

KWM.2016.0094          All-Ireland Drama Festival, Irish Independent, 1960 article.

KWM.2016.0095          Kerry play at Athlone creates a sensation, Evening Press, 1960.

KWM.2016.0096          Evening Herald Newspaper, 1960. Article on The Later Days are Cold.

KWM.2016.0097          Evening Press Newspaper, 1960. Review Sharon’s Grave at All-Ireland.

KWM.2016.0098          Evening Herald, 1960, positive review of The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0099          Evening Press Newspaper, “Play a total failure”, review.

KWM.2016.0100          Evening Herald, 1960, critical review of The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0101          Kerryman 1960. Listowel bids for Drama Honours.

KWM.2016.0102          Advertisement for production of Sive.

KWM.2016.0104          The Standard Newspaper, 1954, Article on George Fitzmaurice.

KWM.2016.0105          The Standard, 1953, comparison between The Quiet Man and Hans Christian Anderson.

KWM.2016.0106          Newspaper article printed March 23rd, 1968, ‘Listowel Players stage a tribute to Patrick Kavanagh’. This refers to the production of Tarry Flynn which was entered in the Kerry Drama Festival that year. The Listowel Players were a breakaway group from the Listowel Drama Group, following the success of Sive in 1959.

KWM.2016.0107          Evening Press, 1960, review of The Golden Folk, Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0108          Kerryman, 1960, review of The Golden Folk, Bryan MacMahon play.

KWM.2016.0109          Evening Press, 1960, review of The Golden Folk, Bryan MacMahon play.

KWM.2016.0110          Evening Herald, 1960, review of Sive by J.B. Keane.

KWM.2016.0111          Irish Press, 1960, review of The Golden Folk, Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0112          Evening Herald, 1960, premier of The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0113          Kerryman, 1960, premier of The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0114          They say what they like, Sunday Independent, 1960, includes photo Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0115          Irish Independent, 1960, details opening of The Golden Folk, Listowel.

KWM.2016.0116          Irish Press, 1960, review of The Golden Folk play.

KWM.2016.0117          Evening Herald, 1960, review of The Golden Folk play.

KWM.2016.0118          Irish Independent, 1960, photograph, opening The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0119          Sunday Independent, 1960, review/description, The Golden Folk.

KWM.2016.0120          Kerryman, 1960, advertisements for upcoming play Sive.

KWM.2016.0121          Irish Press, 1960, Listowel will stage MacMahon work, article on casting American girl, Moira Murphy as character in play.

KWM.2016.0122          Evening Press, 1960, Sealed Lips: Great Stuff, article on B. MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0135          Programme (Theatre), for plays Maurice Harte and Paddy Pedlar, Sluagh                 Hall, Listowel, 1953.

KWM.2016.0144          Poster (Theatre), Halla Rialte Na Maidine, Listowel, mid-20th century.

KWM.2016.0168        Poster (Theatre), The Buds of Ballybunion, by J. B. Keane, 2014.

KWM.2016.0175        Programme (Theatre) for the production of The Colleen Bawn 2006.

KWM.2016.0178        Poster (Theatre) All Soul’s Night, by J. Tomelty, no date.  Possibly 1958.

KWM.2016.0179        Poster (Theatre) Our Town by Thornton Wilder, handwritten, no date.

KWM.2016.0200        Programme (Theatre) The Honey Spike B. MacMahon, 1977/78.

KWM.2016.0279        Flyer for the play Sive Abbey Theatre Logo, the year is 1993.

KWM.2016.0294        Costume bun ring & pins from production of Sive by J. B. Keane.

KWM.2016.0297        Original script of Sive by J. B. Keane. Donated John Cahill

KWM.2016.0299        Sive by J. B. Keane, book bound with forward by Michael Ó hAodha (1959).

KWM.2016.0436        Programme (Theatre) Bryan MacMahon’s The Master, April 1993.

KWM.2016.0526        The Listowel Players present Big Maggie, 1970.

KWM.2016.0527        Lartigue Theatre Company presents Cuckoo Blue, 2011.

KWM.2016.0530        Listowel Drama Group presents Lend me A Tenor, 2004.

KWM.2016.0532        Lartigue Theatre Listowel presents The Communication Cord, 2004.

KWM.2016.0533        Lartigue Theatre presents John B. Keane The Musical, 2006.

KWM.2016.0569        .01 Cast photograph of Sive at the Abbey

(01, 02, 03)                 .02 Black and white photograph during a scene from the 1959 Sive production, at the Abbey

.03 Sive Play.

KWM.2016.0570        Theatre Programme for Sive at the Abbey, 1959.

KWM.2016.0604        Typewritten script of The Honey Spike, by Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0637        Programme for The Honey Spike, play by Bryan MacMahon, December 1993.

KWM.2016.0650        The Playboy of the Western World, 5th February 1951. Poster.

KWM.2016.0651        Poster, Listowel Drama Group presents The Golden Folk

KWM.2016.0653        Photograph. Eamon Kelly and Brendan O’Carroll at 40th anniversary of Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0654        Photograph of Madeleine O’Sullivan in Jack Furey by Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0655        Poster. 8th Annual Kerry Drama Festival, 12th June 1950.

KWM.2016.0656        Poster. 9th Annual Kerry Drama Festival. October 1951.

KWM.2016.0657        Photograph. Steven O’Donovan and Kay Culloty. The Spraying of John O’Dorey. Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0658        Black and white photograph of Michael Whelan.

KWM.2016.0659        Photograph. Catherine Stack in The Death of Biddy Early, 1990. Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0660        Photograph. Valerie Burke in The Death of Biddy Early, 1990.

KWM.2016.0661        Photograph. Rehearsal for The Time of The Whitehorn by Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0662        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Don’t Dress for Dinner, 2003.

KWM.2016.0663        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents The Bugle in The Blood by Bryan MacMahon, 2001.

KWM.2016.0664        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Two On A String.

KWM.2016.0665        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Anyone Could Rob a Bank, 1961.

KWM.2016.0666        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents The Moonlighters by George Fitzmaurice.

KWM.2016.0667        Poster. All – Ireland Drama Festival, Athlone. 1954.

KWM.2016.0668        Poster. Third All-Ireland Drama Festival, Athlone, 1955.

KWM.2016.0669        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents See How They Run.

KWM.2016.0670        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Canaries 1985.

KWM.2016.0671        Programme, Listowel Drama Group presents Them 1972.

KWM.2016.0672        Newspaper clipping, The Listowel Drama Group promises top-class presentation of Coffey play. 1972.

KWM.2016.0673        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Them 1972.

KWM.2016.0674        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Mungo’s Mansion 1948-49.

KWM.2016.0675        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents The Rugged Path 1949.

KWM.2016.0676        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Nano 1949.

KWM.2016.0677        Poster. Listowel Drama Group presents Nano St. Patrick’s Night, 1949.

KWM.2016.0678        Play. Prólóg Don Réim Nua. 1954.

KWM.2016.0679        Play. Journey’s End. Samuel French acting edition. 1929.

KWM.2016.0680        Play. The Plough and The Stars. 1932.

KWM.2016.0681        Play. The Whiteheaded Boy. 1955.

KWM.2016.0682        Play. Our Town. 1965.

KWM.2016.0682.01   Sheet. Opening/closing curtain remarks Our Town.

KWM.2016.0682.02   Sheet. Numbered curtain call for Our Town.

KWM.2016.0682.03   A4 sheet. Three hymns Bless Be the TieArt Thou WearLove Divine.

KWM.2016.0682.04   Two sheets. Cue/effect list for play.

KWM.2016.0682.05   A4 sheet. Drawn picture front and rear of stage.

KWM.2016.0682.06   Sheet. Opening/closing curtain speech supplement.

KWM.2016.0682.07   Paper sheet. Character/prop list for Our Town.

KWM.2016.0686        Play. III Met By Moonlight by Micheál Mac Liammóir. 1954.

KWM.2016.0687        Play. An Tincéar Agus An Tsidheóg by Douglas Hyde.

KWM.2016.0688        Play Bantighearna An Ghorta by Séamus De Bhilmot, 1944.

KWM.2016.0700        Play. Daughter From Over The Water by M. J. Molloy 1967.

KWM.2016.0701        Play. A Letter From The General by Maurice McLoughlin 1962.

KWM.2016.0722        Black and white photograph of a scene from The Magic Glasses by George Fitzmaurice.

Listowel Drama Group: Photographs from various productions from the 1970s.

KWM.2016.0723        Black and white photograph of Dancing at Lughnasa.

KWM.2016.0724        Black and white photograph of rehearsals of The Spraying of John O’Dorey by John B. Keane.

KWM.2016.0725        Black and white photograph. Scene from The Magic Glasses by George Fitzmaurice.

KWM.2016.0726        Black and white photography The Matter Owen McMahon and Madeline O’Sullivan.

KWM.2016.0727        Black and white photograph. 2 copies. Máire O’Connor in The Master by Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0728        Black and white photograph. Jim Halpin in Jack Furey.

KWM.2016.0729        Black and white photograph of unknown man.

KWM.2016.0730        Black and white photograph of Matt Mooney in The Master by Bryan MacMahon.

KWM.2016.0731        Photograph. Cast and production crew of I Do Not Like The Dr. Fell.

KWM.2016.0732        Black and white photography of Canaries by Bernard Farrell.

KWM.2016.0733.01   Photography. 2 Male figures. Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0733.02   Photograph. Bryan MacMahon presenting Marie Coffey, Kevin O’Donovan and Michael Whelan

KWM.2016.0733.03   Photograph. Kay Landy, Rena McAuliffe, and Maria Keane Stack.

KWM.2016.0733.04   Photograph of Eileen Fitzgibbon and Madeline O’Sullivan.

KWM.2016.0733.05   Photograph. Eileen Fitzgibbon in Canaries.

KWM.2016.0733.06   Photograph. Rosarie, Anthony, and Rena McAuliffe.

KWM.2016.0733.07   Photograph of Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0733.08   Photograph of a production of Canaries by Bernard Farrell.

KWM.2016.0733.09   Photograph of Imelda Garvey in Run For Your Wife.

KWM.2016.0733.10   Photograph. Imelda Garvey and Brendan L. in Run For Your Wife.

KWM.2016.0733.11   Photograph. Backstage of Don’t Dress For Dinner.

KWM.2016.0733.12   Photograph. Group on stage from Don’t Dress For Dinner.

KWM.2016.0733.13   Photograph of scene on stage of Don’t Dress For Dinner.

KWM.2016.0733.14   Photograph of scene in stage from Our Town. Máire O’Connor and Brendan Landy.

KWM.2016.0733.15   Photograph. Scene on stage. Madeline O’Sullivan in Our Town.

KWM.2016.0733.16   Photograph. Ned O’Sullivan in Our Town.

KWM.2016.0733.17   Photograph. Scene on stage. Five female figures. Dancing at Lughnasa.

KWM.2016.0733.18   Photograph. Backstage from Dancing at Lughnasa.

KWM.2016.0733.19   Photograph. Two characters on stage from scene of Dancing at Lughnasa.

Local Listowel Drama Collection

Bill and Pat Kearney 1943 1 980x613 1

KWM.2016.0008          Programme, theatre, Sive, Abbey Theatre, Dublin, 1986.

KWM.2016.0009          Programme, theatre, Ill Met by Moonlight, Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0010          Programme, theatre, The Plough and the Stars, produced by Eamon Kelly. The groups staged the play in 1946.

KWM.2016.0011          Programme, theatre, The Couple Beggar, Listowel Drama Group.

KWM.2016.0012          Periodical, Amateur Drama Bulletin, 1964. Vol 1, No 1.

KWM.2016.0013          Manuscript, The Night of the Moon, Seamus White.

KWM.2016.0014          Playscript, A Letter from the General, Maurice McLoughlin, signed H. Wilson, 1962.

KWM.2016.0015          Play script, The Paddy Pedlar, Michael J. Molloy, signed Bill Kearney, Listowel, 1953. A production of this play represented Kerry in the inaugural All-Ireland Festival that year.

KWM.2016.0016          Programmes, theatre, Drama Festivals from all around Ireland, 1949 – 1975.

KWM.2016.0018          Periodicals, Advancing Drama in North Kerry, article from The Cork  Examiner, 1979.

KWM.2016.0019          Magazine “Theatre Arts” July 1949 issue, Death of a Salesman.

KWM.2016.0024          Scrapbook of newspaper articles on A letter from the General, 1967.

KWM.2016.0025          Scrapbook of newspaper cuttings on The Moonlighters by George Fitzmaurice, 1968.

KWM.2016.0025          Scrapbook of newspaper cuttings on The Moonlighters by George Fitzmaurice, 1968.


KWM.2016.0026          Sheet Music, Francis and Day’s 36th Selection of Popular Successes,copyright 1927.

KWM.2016.0027          Sheet Music, Macushla, song by John McCormack, copyright 1910.

KWM.2016.0028          Sheet Music, I Hear You Calling Me, by John McCormack, copyright 1908.

KWM.2016.0029          Sheet Music, Carry me back to green pastures, words and music by Harry S. Pepper.

KWM.2016.0030          Sheet Music, Less than the dust and Kashmiri Song, Amy Woodforde-Finden, 1902.

KWM.2016.0031          Sheet Music, Academic Classics for the Pianoforte, signed by Master Eddie Leahy, Pearse St. Listowel 15/4/’26.

KWM.2016.0032          Sheet Music, Student’s Classics, Sonata in G, Mozart

KWM.2016.0033          Sheet Music, Rondo in D, Academic Classics for the Pianoforte, signed by Patricia Leahy.

KWM.2016.0034          Sheet Music, Arthur Hammerstein, Rose-Marie, A musical play, signed P. Leahy, copyright 1924.

KWM.2016.0035          Sheet Music, Play the Kunz Way. Album of piano transcriptions of the classics by Charlie Kunz, 1937.

KWM.2016.0036          Sheet Music, The Desert Song, by Otto Harbach, 1928.

KWM.2016.0037          Sheet Music, Sunset on the St. Lawrence, Maxime Heller, 1910.

KWM.2016.0038          Sheet Music, Carnival Memories Waltz, Oliver Turner.

KWM.2016.0039          Sheet Music, The Apex Edition of Classical songs, 1924/’37.

KWM.2016.0040          Sheet Music, Pianoforte Studies from the standard composers, copyright 1896.

KWM.2016.0041          Sheet Music, Academic Classics for the pianoforte.

KWM.2016.0042          Sheet Music, April, Tschaikowsky, Holmes and Karn, no 11.

KWM.2016.0043          Sheet Music, Sunny Spain, Suite by Auguste cons piano solo.

KWM.2016.0044          Sheet Music, Under the Double Edge, J. F. Wagner.

KWM.2016.0045          Sheet Music, Three books of music bound together, The real Irish Quadrille, Ophelia Sketch, Estudiantina.

KWM.2016.0046          Sheet Music, Russian ballet dances, Gould and Bottler, 1913.

KWM.2016.0047          Sheet Music, Pleading, song by Arthur L. Salmon, 1908.

KWM.2016.0048          Sheet Music, They Say, Edward Heyman, copyright 1938.

KWM.2016.0049          Sheet Music, My Fair Lady, piano selection, copyright 1956.

KWM.2016.0050          Sheet Music, A new school of studies for pianoforte, 1921.

KWM.2016.0127          Sheet music, compilation, signed P. Leahy, Copyright 1934.

KWM.2016.0103         Christmas card from John B. and Mary Keane, 1959, includes newspaper cutting and personal note from J.B. Keane.

KWM.2016.0182        Various articles on the publication of The Plays of George Fitzmaurice: Dramatic Fantasies, by George Fitzmaurice, Dolmen Press, 1967.

KWM.2016.0183        The Crows of Mephistopheles, Short Story Collection, by George Fitzmaurice, Dolmen Press, 1970.

KWM.2016.0184        Play by George Fitzmaurice, Dramatic Fantasies, 1st 1967.

KWM.2016.0185        The Plays of George Fitzmaurice: Realistic Plays by George Dolmen Press, 1970.

KWM.2016.0186        The Plays of George Fitzmaurice: Realistic Plays by George Dolmen Press, 1970

KWM.2016.0187        Plays of George Fitzmaurice, Folk Plays, Howard Slaughter 1969.

KWM.2016.0213        Newspaper Cutting Her Ambition, an article on Moira Murphy in Bryan MacMahon’s The Golden Folk 1960.

The Collection comprises the extensive newspaper coverage of The Golden Folk production, staged by the Listowel Drama Group, and subsequently, by the Abbey Theatre in 1960, as The Song of the Anvil. Seán Ó Riada, then musical director at the Abbey, composed the music for the play. The production later transferred to New York and was directed by Ria Mooney, who would have known MacMahon through the festival circuit. With a cast of over twenty, this fantasy play based on themes of religious superstition is set in the valley of Glensharon, which is under threat; that an evil spell might be cast by a stranger on the village and its folk at any time. Characters include a visionary, a failed priest, a magician, two village fools and a sex-starved spinster.

KWM.2016.0214        Newspaper Cutting on Bryan MacMahon’s The Golden Folk 1960.

KWM.2016.0215        Newspaper Cutting on Bryan MacMahon’s The Golden Folk 1960.

KWM.2016.0216        All-Ireland Theatre Festival 1953.

KWM.2016.0217        The Golden Folk – Irish Independent 1960.

KWM.2016.0218        Moira Murphy in The Golden Folk 1960.

KWM.2016.0219        Sive and The Country Boy plays, newspaper, 1960.

KWM.2016.0220        New York by J. B. Keane and The Golden Folk, 1960.

KWM.2016.0221        John B. Keane Sharon’s Grave, B. MacMahon The Golden Folk, Athlone Theatre Festival, 1960.

KWM.2016.0222        Athlone Drama Festival Sharon’s GraveThe Golden Folk, 1960.

The Golden Folk was later renamed Song of the Anvil.

KWM.2016.0223        Athlone Drama Festival Sharon’s GraveThe Golden Folk, Sunday Independent, 1960.

KWM.2016.0224        All-Ireland Drama Festival, Michael O’hAodha article, 1960.

KWM.2016.0225        All-Ireland Drama Festival from Irish Press, May 14, 1960.

KWM.2016.0226        Newspaper cutting, Listowel Drama Group wins prize at All-Ireland Drama Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0227        The Golden Folk by B. MacMahon at All-Ireland Theatre Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0228        The Golden Folk by B. MacMahon at Athlone Drama Festival, 1960.

KWM.2016.0229        Evening Press Newspaper cutting, contenders for prizes at All-Ireland Amateur Drama Festival.

KWM.2016.0230        Newspaper cutting, All-Ireland Drama Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0231        Evening Herald newspaper cutting, Athlone Theatre Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0232        Evening Herald newspaper cutting, Athlone Theatre Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0233        Evening Press newspaper, Galway Theatre review 1960.

KWM.2016.0234        Irish Independent newspaper cutting, All-Ireland Drama Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0235        J. B. Keane’s Sharon’s Grave in Ballyshannon. Evening Herald 1960.

KWM.2016.0236        Kerryman newspaper, The Golden Folk by B. MacMahon 1960.

KWM.2016.0237        The adjudicator’s role in amateur drama. Evening Herald 1960.

KWM.2016.0238        Bryan MacMahon play wins award at North Cork Drama Festival.

KWM.2016.0239        J. B. Keane’s Sharon’s Grave produced in Ballyshannon, newspaper 1960.

KWM.2016.0240        Irish Independent newspaper, All-Ireland Drama Festival, mention of Golden Folk by B. MacMahon and Sharon’s Grave by J. B. Keane 1960.

KWM.2016.0241        Irish Independent 1960, Curtain Falls on Amateur Thetre Season.

KWM.2016.0242        Evening HeraldUp Sive newspaper cutting about the success of J. B. Keane’s Sive 1960.

KWM.2016.0243        Evening Herald newspaper, critique of The Proposal.

KWM.2016.0244        Mr. Hugh Wilmot critic, newspaper cutting 1960.

KWM.2016.0245        Irish Independent cutting, B. MacMahon The Golden Folk at Kerry Drama Festival 1960.

KWM.2016.0246        Newspaper cutting Irish Independent 1960 theatre reviews.

KWM.2016.0247        1955, Westmeath Independent Dramatic Commentary.

KWM.2016.0248        1955, Athlone Theatre Festival, newspaper cutting.

KWM.2016.0249        Irish Press article on III Met by Moonlight all Ireland 1955.

KWM.2016.0250        Newspaper cutting on criticisms on minimum standards for plays 1955.

KWM.2016.0251        Photograph of Listowel Players, article on Liberator’s relative to adjudicate Kerry Drama Festival, article on Bugle in the Blood, MacMahon’s 1949 play, which was staged by the Abbey Theatre

KWM.2016.0252        Evening Press 1960 article on LDG winners and The Later Days are Cold.

KWM.2016.0253        The Winners at Athlone Evening Press 1960, Photos of Actors.

KWM.2016.0254        Newspaper cuttings: Athlone Festival, Evening Herald 1960.

KWM.2016.0255        Photos of All-Ireland Winners, Asdee Players, Irish Independent, 1960.

KWM.2016.0256        All-Ireland Festival, photo of Limerick group winning B. MacMahon Trophy, 1960.

KWM.2016.0257        Photo of Abbeyfeale Players presenting The Iron Harp on Irish Independent 1960.

KWM.2016.0258        Queens University Belfast students staging Murder in the CathedralIrish Press 1960.

KWM.2016.0259        Newspaper article on Sive from Evening Herald, 1960.

KWM.2016.0260        Newspaper article on Navan Players in Athlone, two black and white photos.

KWM.2016.0261        Evening Press article on Sive at St. Mary’s Theatre, Westport, fund-raiser 1960.

KWM.2016.0262        Mountain of a Play from Listowel, Evening Herald 1960.

KWM.2016.0263        Barry Cassin critic defends opinion Evening Press, 1960.

KWM.2016.0264        Opinion piece by Gabriel Fallon on New Drama arguing against 1960.

KWM.2016.0265        Article on Double Door in North Cork Festival and critique of B. Cassin by J. M. Filgate.

KWM.2016.0266        Newspaper articles on what local societies are doing by Ray McAnnally 1960.

KWM.2016.0267        Article in Kerryman, 1960, Cassin Greatly Moved by MacMahon play.

KWM.2016.0268        New Play has something worth saying The Golden Folk 1960.

KWM.2016.0269        Newspaper, Evening Herald, 1960 critique of plays nominated.

KWM.2016.0270        Newspaper Westmeath Independent. mentions of III Met by Moonlight and Bryan MacMahon’s Bugle in the Blood dated 1955.

KWM.2016.0271        Newspaper cutting no date mentions Bugle in the Blood.

KWM.2016.0272        Actor Barry Cassin hits out at Drama Festivals, Evening Press 1960.

KWM.2016.0273        Straw BoysGolden Folk and The Black Stranger, Independent 1960.

KWM.2016.0274        News about staging The Gold Folk and Sive with Ray McAnally.

KWM.2016.0275        Great Reception for MacMahon play in Listowel, Kerryman, 1960.

KWM.2016.0276        Entrants for North Cork Drama Festival, Sharon’s Grave and Golden Folk, 1960.

KWM.2016.0277        Airing for Amateurs, Philip Rooney Irish Press, 1951, reference to a Radio Eireann Programme

KWM.2016.0278        Invitation card to attend unveiling of Bust Brendan Kennelly, 2014.

KWM.2016.0279        Flyer for the play Sive Abbey Theatre Logo, the year is 1993.

KWM.2016.0352        Upright John Brinsmead and Sans piano, featuring candlesticks.

KWM.2016.0487        The Bugle in the Blood by Bryan MacMahon; typewritten script 1949-1961 (3).

KWM.2016.0572        Small suitcase / cosmetic case owned by Bill Kearney.

KWM.2016.0573        Vintage cosmetics from Listowel Drama Group dated 1940 to 1960.

KWM.2016.0574        Costume spectacles and case from Listowel Drama Group 1960.

KWM.2021.0690/       1-7  Photographs:

  1. Bill and Pat Kearney, c.1942
  2. Bill Kearney, c.1940s
  3. Bill Kearney backstage, date unknown
  4. Bill Kearney accepting an award, c.1961
  5. a special presentation made to Bill Kearney, c.1971
  6. Biographical notes written by Liz Gillen, née Kearney.

Bill Kearney Collection

1 1 980x976 1

A native of Listowel, Bill Kearney joined the Listowel Drama Group in 1946 and enjoyed much success with the group on the amateur circuit. An actor, he was involved in many of the prizewinning productions nationwide, including the Kerry Drama Festival. Bill Kearney was invited to act in two Abbey Theatre productions of plays by the North Kerry playwright, George Fitzmaurice: The Magic Glasses, a one-act play, and the full-length play, The King of the Barna Men, in 1967. Kearney won rave reviews for his performances in both productions. He was noted in  particular for his performances in the Listowel Drama Group’s production of The Bugle and the Blood by Brian MacMahon (1949), The King of Friday’s Men, by M.J. Molloy, (1950). He played the infamous lecherous old man, Sean Dota, who had arranged to marry the young school Sive, in the John B. Keane’s play pf the same name. Sive took the country by storm and won the All-Ireland Festival title in 1959. The play was subsequently stage at the Abbey by the amateur group.

Kearney’s collection encompasses numerous newspaper articles from the late 1950s and 60s from both local and national broadsheets; various programmes from regional festivals, Listowel Drama Group programmes from the 1950s; books, including his copies of the George Fitzmaurice plays (Dolmen Press); musical scores and other print matter. His makeup case is also part of the collection.

The archive is in pristine condition and donated to KWM between 2016 and 2018.


What people are saying about us
  • Popped in here to escape the rain and get a cup of tea and cake. Very reasonable prices and great service. Then noticed the little hare jumping around on the wall when I used the toilets! Looked very intriguing and prompted us all to buy tickets to the museum. Wow! So worth it as the exhibits and the way it was presented was lovely, really unusual. So informative and so different to other museums. Really good value for money and a real highlight to the town.

    Great Service (Trip Advisor Review)

    – March, 2023

  • Most impressive is how ingrained in both The Creative & local communities The Seanchaí is, from the workshops, coffee mornings & plain old drop ins, To Book launches, poetry recitals, projects & engagements with the local schools. The Seanchaí is a much loved and universally treasured cultural icon. By the inhabitants of Listowel, most of Co. Kerry and West Limerick.

    Mark Ollerhead (Google Review)

    – March, 2023

  • We had requested the 30-minute tour, but happily lingered for an hour longer than we had planned. As we exited, we looked at each other and laughed out loud at our good fortune. We could have so easily missed this experience that left us feeling moved, intrigued and a bit more educated about the Kerry writers. In our delight, we failed to tip our guide but I will be going to your donations page to make a modest pledge in gratitude for our host whose name we did not record to memory.

    Jane Braswell (Google Review)

    – March, 2023

  • Our visit to the Kerry Writers Museum was a very memorable experience from beginning to end. Cara, who was working at the centre that day, was very welcoming and most helpful. The exhibition of the Kerry writers was imaginative and most engaging. The seanchai relating the background stories each writer was magic! A wonderful experience all round.

    Cara (Google Review)

    – May, 2021

  • This museum has been developed with great care and meticulous attention to detail. The audio elements are matched perfectly to the installations which are beautifully presented. The option to activate the audio guides in each room without resorting to the use of handheld devices worked very well. This is a must see/hear for anyone with an interest in Irish writing. There is also a little coffee shop and gifts on sale.

    Beautifully Curated (Trip Advisor Review)

    – July, 2019


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