FRANK CARSON – A REBEL WITHOUT A PAUSE – Written and Performed by Dan Gordon
Directed by Ian McElhinney
Presented by Happenstance Theatre Company
Happenstance Theatre Company is delighted to announce that Dan Gordon’s acclaimed one-man play about Frank Carson, directed by Ian McElhinney, will be back at the Lyric Theatre in June.
Dan has been involved in over 100 productions at the Lyric over his 35-year career and was delighted to be invited back as part of the theatre’s 50th anniversary celebrations:
“The first live play I ever saw was in 1977 on the Lyric stage – ‘The Colleen Bawn’ starring Liam Neeson. The production was full of Lyric stalwarts like Des McAleer, Margaret McCann, Louis Roulston and Lucy Jamison and it convinced me that I wanted to join them and become an actor. As a student I started working at the Lyric one day a month, cycling around Belfast trying to convince shopkeepers to put up posters for the shows. I was paid a fiver for the day and I wasn’t allowed to give away any free tickets.”
Dan wrote ‘Frank Carson – A Rebel Without A Pause’ with the blessing of Frank’s family and spent three years researching the man behind the laughs and what drove him to succeed. Belfast funnyman Frank Carson blazed a comedy trail for over fifty years. His quick-fire gags and infectious laugh delighted audiences in variety shows, on telly and in clubs across the land – The Comedians , The Good Old Days, Seaside Special, Royal Variety, Noel’s Houseparty, Tiswas, and many more. In 1976 alone he did 41 network TV shows. He was Mayor of Balbriggan (twice), King of Blackpool, Clown Prince of Ireland and Prime Minister of Fun.
The show’s return to the Lyric in June, after a sell-out run last November, will reunite Dan with another Lyric favourite Ian McElhinney who has been busy filming of late, in ‘Derry Girls’ and ‘Krypton’. They have worked together on many shows over decades and Ian commented:
“The last time I directed Dan at the Lyric was in ‘Weddins, Weeins and Wakes’ by Marie Jones. He played many roles – from a Granda who dropped dead on the 12th of July walking to the field, to a dancing road sweeper, and a nosey neighbour. He also grabbed the chance to wear a Dolly Parton country and western mini-skirt outfit complete with Stetson, thigh boots and fringe sleeves. Audiences didn’t know what had hit them and I believe several sought counselling afterwards – mind you we had a sold-out run.”
Executive Producer of the Lyric Theatre, Jimmy Fay, commented:
“Dan’s portrayal of Frank Carson is deeply poignant and very funny. It’s an extraordinary and detailed portrait of the great comedian that gives you an understanding of the man and the times he lived in. Dan is one of our greatest theatre artists and we are delighted he is returning to the Lyric with this fantastic show.”
‘Frank Carson – A Rebel Without A Pause’ is written and performed by Dan Gordon and will be at the Lyric Theatre from 13 – 30 June 2018. This 75-minute whirlwind comedy drama celebrates the man, the myth and the mouth – it’s a cracker!