Stella Feehily

Plays by Stella Feehily

Bang Bang Bang  

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Stella Feehily 's play Bang Bang Bang is a drama that looks at what goes on behind the public face of charities, journalists and NGOs. It was first performed at the Octagon Theatre, Bolton, on 5 September 2011, in a production by Out of Joint that subsequently toured the UK, including performances at the Royal Court Theatre, London, in October 2011.

Sadhbh, a seasoned human rights defender, and her idealistic young colleague, Mathilde, embark on a trip to the Democratic Republic of Congo. For Mathilde, it's an induction into a life less ordinary, while for Sadhbh, it's back to madness and chaos away from her lover and London – exactly as she likes it. While Mathilde lets off steam with a photographer and a spliff, Sadhbh has her own encounter: tea with a smart but brutal young warlord she's investigating. But things are about to escalate, with terrifying consequences.

The Out of Joint production was directed by Max Stafford-Clark and designed by Miriam Nabarro. It was performed by Orla Fitzgerald (as Sadhbh), Julie Dray (as Mathilde), Babou Ceesay, Dan Fredenburgh, Frances Ashman, Zara Brown, Pena liyambo, Akleia Louis-Frederick, Jessica Richardson, Paul Hickey and Jack Farthing.

Dreams of Violence  

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Stella Feehily's play Dreams of Violence is a tragicomedy about love, death and responsibility. It was first performed at Soho Theatre, London, on 9 July 2009, in a co-production with Out of Joint.

The play is set in London in September 2008. For forty-something Hildy, political activism comes easier than dealing with the disorder of her family life: her druggie son, Jamie; her philandering soon-to-be-ex husband, Ben; her father, Jack, misbehaving in a hugely expensive retirement home. Then there's Shirley, Hildy's charismatic mother – a former pop star with a fondness for booze – who sets up camp in Hildy's spare room to belittle her from close range. By day, Hildy leads the City's cleaners in revolt against the bankers. But by night, she dreams of unsettling acts of violence.

The Out of Joint/Soho Theatre production was directed by Max Stafford-Clark and designed by Lucy Osborne. It was performed by Jamie Baughan, Nigel Cooke, Giles Cooper, Thusitha Jayasundera, Ciaran McIntyre, Catherine Russell (as Hildy), Mossie Smith and Paula Wilcox.

Duck

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Stella Feehily's first play Duck is a drama about female friendship set in contemporary Dublin. It was first performed at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmunds, on 24 July 2003, in a production by Out of Joint. This production went on national tour, including a run at the Royal Court Theatre, London, from 20 November 2003 to 10 January 2004.

Set in present-day Dublin, the play follows Cat, a girl in her late teens, temping as a nightclub hostess in a seedy bar belonging to her thuggish boyfriend Mark. Cat (or 'Duck', as Mark unkindly calls her, because of the size of her feet) tries to kick-start her life by blowing up Mark's car and, later, starting a relationship with Jack, an ageing author with a drink problem. But for all her attempts to transcend the limitations of her life, she comes to realise that companionship with her best mate Sophie offers the best option after all.

The premiere production was directed by Max Stafford-Clark and designed by Jonathan Fensom. It was performed by Gina Moxley, Ruth Negga (as Cat), Aidan O’Hare, Tony Rohr, Karl Shiels (as Mark) and Elaine Symons (as Sophie).

O Go My Man  

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Stella Feehily 's play O go my Man is a satirical comedy of modern manners set in contemporary Dublin. It was first performed at the Royal Court Theatre Downstairs, London, on 12 January 2006, in a co-production with Out of Joint, and subsequently toured the UK. It was the joint winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize for 2006-07.

The play centres on Neil, a maverick television reporter struggling to re-integrate into domestic life in Dublin after returning with a head full of nightmares from an assignment covering the conflict in Darfur, western Sudan. He takes a hammer to his life, and his fifteen years of marriage. But is his extra-curricular relationship with Sarah going to mend anything, or is it just that she's new?

The play's title, O go my Man, is an anagram of 'monogamy'.

The Out of Joint/Royal Court Theatre production was directed by Max Stafford-Clark with a set design by Es Devlin. It was performed by Denise Gough, Sam Graham, Paul Hickey, Susan Lynch, Aoife McMahon, Gemma Reeves, Mossie Smith and Ewan Stewart (as Neil).

This May Hurt a Bit  

Nick Hern Books
Type: Text

Stella Feehily's play This May Hurt A Bit is a satirical exploration of the state of Britain's National Health Service, though the experiences of one family and its journey through the system. It was first performed at the Theatre Royal, Bury St Edmonds, on 6 March 2014, in an Out of Joint/Octagon Theatre, Bolton, co-production, before touring the UK.

The play opens with a 1948 speech by Aneurin Bevan, founding father of the NHS, on the difficulties of establishing the health service in the face of opposition from the British Medical Association. It then cuts to March 2011, and the Prime Minister is seeking advice from a senior civil servant on the shortcomings of the government's Health and Social Care Bill, which proposes a fundamental, top-down restructuring of the health service. We then meet Nicholas James, a widower who, in 2014, is diagnosed with prostate problems and then subjected to delayed check-ups. But, unlike his snooty sister and her American surgeon-husband, Nicholas remains a passionate advocate of the NHS. When his mother, Iris, suffers an attack that turns out to be a rare case of 'transient global amnesia', she is subjected to a sojourn in the geriatric ward. There may be blood on the ceiling and a corpse behind a curtain, but there is total dedication from the harassed staff.

The Out of Joint/Octagon Theatre, Bolton, co-production was directed by Max Stafford-Clark with set and costume design by Tim Shortall. It was performed by Stephanie Cole (as Iris), Brian Protheroe (as Nicholas), Hywel Morgan, Tristram Wymark, Jane Wymark, Frances Ashman, William Hope and Natalie Klamar.

Stella Feehily's plays have been staged at the Royal Court Theatre, Soho Theatre and Project Arts Centre, Dublin, among others. She was co-winner of the Susan Smith Blackburn Award 2007 for O Go My Man.