Laois Youth Theatre


Laois Youth Theatre impress on the stage of the Dunamaise Arts Centre


The Laois Youth Theatre junior and senior groups hosted a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon of theatre in the Dunamaise Arts Centre last Sunday (14TH May).

A large number of friends and family turned up to witness a very high quality theatre event. The junior members performed an abridged version of Around the World in 80 Days, by Philip Brennan and Stephen Colfer. The backdrop projections brought us to each location in the play and added immensely to the experience. This was designed by Nick Anton, Technical manager at the Dunamaise.

The acting was very impressive all around with the young actors presenting their characters credibly.

The senior group presented Wrap up Warm, a play they devised themselves, it was an intriguing mystery which showcased their talents to the upmost. Again, the group performed to a very high standard. The props and costumes in both shows were provided by the actors. The poster was designed by Isobelle Kelly one of the members of the one of the senior group.

The directors were Coordinators Siobhan Coffey and Mirjana Rendulic and they were assisted by Aisling Mc Donald.

The Portlaosie branch of the Laois Youth Theatre will adjourn for the Summer and recommence in September. Members must be minimum 12 years of age and attending 2nd level school.

Young people interested in joining are asked to email the Arts Office at or T: 057 8664033/13.

A new youth group is commencing in Mountrath also and for further details from E:  or


Laois Youth Theatre Portlaoise meet at The Youth Education Centre, Railway St, Portlaoise. Weekly workshops run on Fridays on a school term basis for ages 12-14 from 5pm-6.30pm and for ages: 15-18 from 7pm-8.30pm Following very successful end of year performances at the Dunamaise Arts Centre, in July of 2016 a small group of the members also presented CHERISH, a poignant performance tribute to the short lives of the children who perished during Easter week 1916 as partof the county’s Centenary Commemoration Programme.

In the production the group took a re-imagined glance back to catch the whispered echoes of these young lives that were so violently lost. Forty young girls and boys, aged 16 and under, whose lives and deaths, until recently, went unrecognised, whose bodies were largely buried in unmarked graves. Forty young children whose dreams and aspirations, whose august destinies, were squandered in the newly declared Republic…

CHERISH is a physical theatre piece that takes its inspiration from Joe Duffy’s book – “Children of the Rising” and was devised by the youth theatre during the summer two-week long drama workshop. The outdoor performance of CHERISH, directed by Siobhán Coffey, took place on Friday 29th July in Fitzmaurice Place, Portlaoise. One of the audience commented following the performance “there was a part when all fell silent but for the wind blowing the bunting and the quiet movement of the children – it was just magical.”

On foot of the CHERISH performance, Laois Youth Theatre have received an invitation from Youth Work Ireland to perform at a Youth Arts Showcase in the Autumn and Joe Duffy was busy tweeting about the performance and clips of the film can be seen on YouTube.

Established over twenty years , Laois Youth Theatre is a quality youth arts programme that supports opportunities and experiences for learning, creativity and developing skills. New members are always welcome to join.

Learn all about theatre, play games, get creative, see how to put on a show and how things run back stage while having fun, gaining confidence and making new friends. The weekly workshops cover all aspects of drama, including voice, movement, improvisation, physical theatre and performance skills. Laois Youth Theatre is affiliated to the National Association for Youth Drama, and members have the opportunity to network with Youth Theatres nationally and visit theatre shows.

Fee for the year is €100 and this can be paid in full or in two installments of €50, payable on the first day of term. Call now to book your place. Check out the latest news on our facebook page  More information T: 057 8664033/13