The Women of the Rising

2016 The Women of the Rising

This piece was a labor of love, written by Dennis Corcoran for the 1916-2016 Ireland Centenary celebration events at the Book House in Maplewood.

Some of the organizers of the 2016 Missouri River Irish Fest attended this event at the Book House and asked that we present the play at the Festival, to perform The Women of the Rising for several dignitaries who would be attending and, of course, for all others who wished to attend.  We gladly accepted and performed two shows to very appreciative audiences.

After the first show, we were asked if we could bring the show to the annual convention of the LAOH in New Jersey and, additionally, were asked if we would be willing to perform the play at the gathering spot of the Irish Northern Aid (INA) in St. Louis.

Unfortunately, schedules did not permit us to perform at the national convention – although it would have been a tremendous honor.  We did, subsequently, perform the show twice more in St. Louis at the Irish Corner Pub for the INA and its guests.

All performances were very well received.

Those involved were:  Michelle Rebollo, director of STLCC-Meramec’s Theatre Program, who played Dr. Kathleen Lynn; Michelle Zielinski, former student, who played Margaret Skinnider; Madeline Finn, student, who played Shiela O’Hanlon, and Jordan Stiles, student, who played Elizabeth O’Farrell.  Michelle Zielinski’s son, Jared Goudsmit, rounded out the cast, playing the role of the photographer for the reunion of these four Irish rebel ladies.

A labor of love?  Yes.  To have delved deeply into the lives, spirits, words, thoughts and deeds of so many of those who fought against daunting odds for Ireland’s freedom … to have come back from those explorations into their own and one’s own being with these four stories, woven together by the momentous events of 1916-1923 … some things, however small, move, change one in spirit.  This play changed its author in spirit.  And to see / hear these four talented actresses bring such life and spirit to these characters …

Directed by Michelle Rebollo.

Yes, a labor of love.