Play on mental health and prison service

by Rachel Cunningham
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Rachel Cunningham

A Ballymun comedian, Willie White, is currently performing in a show that deals with mental health and the prison service, writes Rachel Cunningham.

The Examination is an award-winning production by Brokentalkers exploring mental health and human rights in the prison system. In addition to the stand-up comedian and former prisoner Willie White, Gary Keegan, of Brokentalkers,will also be performing.

The Examination draws on historical research and testimony from current and former prisoners and has been described as an “uncompromising and revelatory interrogation of an aspect of society too often ignored”.

It is the outcome of a 12-month research period, which involved theatre workshops and interviews with life sentence prisoners and former prisoners in various settings including Mountjoy Prison and PACE Training and Education Services.

The play has also drawn on wider historical analysis undertaken by Associate Professor Catherine Cox (UCD), with Professor Hilary Marland and Dr Rachel Bennett (University of Warwick).

It will be in Dráiocht, Blachardstown, on April 21, Droichead Arts Centre, Drogheda on April 23 and in the Project Arts Centre, in Temple Bar between April 26 and 30, as part of the Live Collision festival.

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