To be or not to be...on an Olympic stage?

Ballymoney Museum needs eager actors to sign up for the premiere performance of a new drama on the life of Dervock’s Olympic hero, Kennedy K. McArthur.

This summer is the centenary of the Olympic victory of Kennedy K. McArthur who won the marathon at the 1912 Stockholm Games. McArthur was born in Dervock, Co. Antrim and his amazing achievement is being commemorated with a series of events, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, which will take place in June and July. The programme includes an exhibition at Ballymoney Museum, school workshops, community re-enactments and a Festival of Running. In addition, one of the highlights will be an exciting new play on the life of McArthur, “The Golden Point & Afterwards”, which has been commissioned by Ballymoney Museum and will be performed in Dervock and Ballymoney.

The performance will be centred on four professional actors, with the remaining cast being drawn from volunteers in the local community.

The writer/director, Peter Morgan Barnes is enthusiastic about the project and wants to encourage everyone to come forward and take part: “This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who wants to try some acting. Absolutely no previous experience is necessary, all we want from you is enthusiasm, dedication and a willingness to act. The only essential is that you are able to make a commitment to some rehearsal time and to the dates of the performances. Participants should also be 18 and over.”

There will be four performances of “The Golden Point & Afterwards” – two in Ballymoney Town Hall on Friday 13 and Saturday 14 July at 7.30pm and two more in William Pinkerton Memorial Primary School on Thursday 19 and Friday 20 July at 7.30pm. The performance on 20 July will be followed by a Torchlight Procession from the primary school to Dervock Recreation Grounds. Villagers and visitors are all welcome to come along and see the play or take part in the Torchlight Procession.

If you are interested in taking part or would like to find out a bit more about the project before making a commitment, then please come along to a meeting on Monday 11 June at 7.30pm in Ballymoney Town Hall. Peter Morgan Barnes will be there to tell you more about what will be involved and answer any queries you might have. Bring your diary, as Peter will try to arrange the rehearsal schedule to suit the participants’ availability. For further information, please contact Keith Beattie, Museum Manager, Ballymoney Museum, Ballymoney Town Hall, Tel: 028 2766 0230 or email museum@ballymoney.gov.uk. Full details of the programme of centenary events can be found at www.marathonmac2012.com.