‘At Large’ in Edinburgh

daniel o'brien

A Longford man was ‘At Large’ in Edinburgh last month, as a Dublin-based theatre group brought three plays to the prestigious Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
30-year-old Daniel O’Brien, a native of Newtownforbes, is a member of At Large Theatre, who presented three original shows over two weeks.

From a passing interest in drama as a child, O’Brien joined the drama society when he enrolled in Trinity College to study History and Economics, but, as he laughed; “College just got in the way.”

It wasn’t until he had left college and completed his accountancy exams thereafter that he was convinced by a friend to join No Drama Theatre in Dublin, where he developed his acting, writing and directing skills.

“I went along with him and I enjoyed it. They did a weekly workshop every Tuesday and I’d go to those,” Daniel explained, before laughing, “my friend dropped out after a few weeks.”

After working with At Large Theatre’s Artistic Director, Gráinne Curistan, he joined the group and went on to write one of the three plays they presented in Edinburgh.

According to Daniel, ‘Nowhere Now’ centred on “internal trade agreements and capitalism and working life”.
“It’s mostly just about the language people use to talk about them.”

Daniel also appeared in the Gráinne Curistan written and directed ‘The Meeting’ a comedy set in an office. The third show was the deeply personal, character-driven ‘Beryl’.

Speaking on his return from the festival, Daniel said; “Edinburgh was great. We got settled into it pretty quickly; the routine of flyering, dealing with the time slot pressure that you get at festivals… which was great. I was a bit nervous beforehand about how we’d react to that but everyone handled it very well.

“It is a very competitive environment and we had to learn very quickly how best to sell the different shows.”

They did an excellent job, if the results were anything to go by, with Daniel reporting some great audiences as well as some sell-outs.

“I think it was a very positive experience overall,” he concluded, “we got some very positive audience reactions, we saw a lot of great shows and talked to a lot of interesting people, and everyone made it back physically safe and mentally sane, which is a good result on its own!”

For more on At Large Theatre, visit www.atlargetheatre.com or follow them on Facebook.