The annual Ursuline Musical Hello Dolly opened on Saturday, October 21 and what a show it is this year. While Dolly is currently enjoying a Broadway Revival with Bette Midler in the starring role it is also enjoying a long awaited return to the Ursuline. The witty script, brassy musical numbers, energy and colour is proving to be a huge hit with audiences both Stateside and in Thurles. Not even Ex Hurricane Ophelia could dampen the spirits of the cast who were rearing to go when school returned last week after the unexpected sojourn.
Katie Taylor is phenomenal in the lead. She owns the stage as the feisty, funny, matchmaking Dolly Gallagher Levi who sets her cap or ‘hat’ at the unsuspecting half millionaire Horace Vandergelder. Meanwhile Caitríona Timmins remains steadfast throughout in her portrayal of the vexatious Vandergelder. His austerity contrasts wonderfully with Dolly’s vivaciousness.
Dolly’s scheming and artful intriguing in the love lives of the other characters lends to some hilarious scenes. There are great comic moments between Dolly and Vandergelder’s poor, under appreciated store clerks Cornelius Hackl and Barnaby Tucker played by Rebecca Williams and Erika Carroll respectively. Cornelius and Barnaby, unsophisticated in the ways of the world, are determined to close up Mr. Vandergelder’s Hay and Feed store, while the boss is away on his own mission to propose to the Widow Molloy. Cornelius and Barnaby head to New York to live a little, which by their definition involves kissing girls and seeing a stuffed whale.
Meanwhile the beautiful Widow Molloy, played so eloquently by Rachel Butler, has no intention of marrying grumpy Horace Vandergelder. Dolly arranges a meeting between the two clerks and Irene Molloy and her assistant Minnie Fay. Kate Williams is delightfully convincing in the role of excitable chatterbox Minnie Fay. Love blossoms between these four characters meaning Dolly can now use her womanly charms to reel in the reluctant, grouchy Vandergelder. In other scenes Michaela Grace Ginty captures the weepy Ermengarde perfectly and is complemented well by Emma Osborne in the role of her her awkward, struggling artist fiancée, Ambrose.
However while the absorbing plot provides plenty of comedy it is the rousing musical numbers that continue to draw the audiences in. Songs like ‘It Takes a Woman’, ‘Put On Your Sunday Clothes’ ‘Before the Parade Passes’ and of course the memorable title number ‘Hello Dolly’ always have the crowds swaying and singing along. The spectacular, energetic dance scenes, particularly the lively waiters, provide extra vibrancy and zest to the evening’s entertainment.
Many thanks to everyone involved in all aspects of the production, the cast, musicians, wardrobe, set designers, lighting and sound crew, photography, box office, programs, hampers, back stage supervisors, student volunteers, front of house, make-up and to parents and the Ursuline Community for their continued and much appreciated support. So to ensure you get good seat for this not to be missed production call into the school reception or simply ring 0504-22147. The show runs from October 21 to Thursday October 26. Because you probably can’t make it to Broadway to see the latest production of Hello Dolly the Ursuline has brought the glitz of Broadway to you.
Soapbox Europe Direct
The Ursuline was well represented at the recent Europe Direct Soapbox Public Speaking held in L.I.T. on October 12. The purpose of this competition is to raise awareness of the EU and how it works. Eleven students, from Junior Cert, TY and fifth year, spoke on the topic ‘Brexit – Ireland’s opportunity?’. Congratulations to Isobel Quirk, the winner of this round and to all those who delivered speeches on the night, Mary Kate Barrett, Hannah Cahill, Caoimhe Meade, Síobhan Greene, Victoria Cottrell, Nicole Rafter, Kerry Tierney, Erika Carroll, Anna Bradish and Aislinn Maher. Best wishes to the four students who will now continue to the Regional Finals in Waterford, Hannah Cahill, Isobel Quirk, Mary Kate Barrett and Kerry Tierney. If any of these students the get through in the next round they will compete in the All Ireland Final of Soapbox and be in with a chance to win €1000 and a trip to Brussels. Thanks to Ms. Quinn for her help in preparing and encouraging the girls this competition.
St. Ursula’s Feast Day
Thanks to the students and teachers of the Religious Education Department who prepared a reflection and prayers for the feast of St. Ursula. St. Ursula’s feast day was on Saturday, October 21 but the students and staff remembered her the day before with a para-liturgy. The faith and martyrdom of this early Christian saint was reflected upon. The day was celebrated, as always, with a bar of chocolate for each student.