ACTORS SETTING SAIL FOR BRUSSELS
This June, Dan Gordon will bring his critically acclaimed production of The Boat Factory to the internationally renowned Bozar Theatre in Brussels, as part of the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Brussels Platform.
Belfast Sets Sail for Brussels: Pictured under the iconic shipyard cranes are actors Dan Gordon and Michael Condron who are bringing the critically acclaimed production of The Boat Factory to the internationally renowned Bozar Theatre in Brussels. Performing for 3 nights from the 27 June, the actors shall be presenting their unique take on the Shipbuilders of Belfast to an international audience. They will be the first theatre company from Northern Ireland to take to the famous Centre for the Fine Arts stage as part of The Brussels Platform initiative supported by the Arts Council and the Northern Ireland Executive in Brussels.
Performing for 3 nights from the 27 June, actors Dan Gordon and Michael Condron shall be presenting their unique take on the Shipbuilders of Belfast to an international audience. They will be the first theatre company from Northern Ireland to take to the famous Centre for the Fine Arts stage as part of The Brussels Platform initiative supported by the Arts Council and the Northern Ireland Executive in Brussels.
Based on his personal experience of growing up around the east Belfast shipyard The Boat Factory explores the infamous shipbuilding heritage of Belfast in a poignant and human tale of comradeship, pride, loyalty, kindness, beauty, skill, craftsmanship, nobility and above all heart. Set in 1947 it tells the tale of a 16 year old boy walking into a life within the gargantuan world of shipbuilding in post war Belfast. Recognised as a centre of excellence, the Harland and Wolff Titanic Shipyard was home to (at one time) over 35,000 men (with 76 different trades) who collectively built 1700 ships. This theatrical tale which started out in the streets overshadowed by the famous yellow cranes, has played to thousands and was the hottest ticket in last year’s international Belfast Festival at Queen’s.
Actor Dan Gordon said: “I’m thrilled to be taking The Boat Factory to the Bozar in Brussels. This will be the first time that we have performed the show outside Northern Ireland and it is a wonderful opportunity to share part of our proud history with an international audience. The play is set in the years when Harland & Wolff were the leading shipbuilders to the world and is a celebration of the City of Belfast and the people who made her great. I am delighted to be able to introduce audiences in Brussels to the place we all know and love, where anything was and is still possible.”
The Brussels Platform is the result of collaboration between the Arts Council of Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Executive Office in Brussels. Launched in September 2011 the programme runs until June 2012 and will represent musicians, writers, dancers, theatre practitioners and visual artists giving them the opportunity to showcase their talents at a series of ten monthly events at the prestigious headquarters of the NI Executive.
Gerry Mulligan, Head of Office in Brussels, said: "It is with great anticipation we await the arrival of The Boat Factory. How poignant and wonderful that we can host a tale about Belfast’s most famous tradesmen at such a relevant time in the city’s shipbuilding history. Showcasing our up and coming talent in Brussels reinforces the region's international reputation as a centre of excellence in the visual and performing arts.”
Damian Smyth, Head of Drama and Literature with the Arts Council of Northern Ireland said: “Both actors are great ambassadors for Northern Ireland and an example of the wealth of talent to come from our shores. The Bozar is an internationally renowned venue which has played host to a number of outstanding performers. We are confident that The Boat Factory will be a resounding success demonstrating our creative talents at their very best.