The Valley of The Squinting Windows
Mullingar Arts Centre I 2nd - 4th November 2023 I The Valley of The Squinting Windows
Set in 1918, and opening with the infamous “burning of the book” in the village of Delvin, this production is a magnificent feat using new digital video and audio technologies, 12 professional actors, and a large company of “community players” Prepare for an evening of great Theatre.
The last time this novel was officially read in public was the year of its publication in 1918 on the steps of Clonyn castle to the gathered villagers of Delvin. Understandably, the locals were excited that one of their own had written a published book. During the reading, the locals quickly realized that the fictional characters in the novel were representative of the people in and around the village of Delvin. Pride instantly turned to hostility and an ensuing national scandal in Ireland.
Copies of the book were burned in the centre of the village and MacNamara found himself hauled before the courts and ordered to pay compensation. But the villagers, so insulted by MacNamara’s novel, turned their anger towards the author’s father, James Weldon, who was principal of the National School at nearby Balinvalley. Parents refused to send their children to the school. Ultimately, MacNamara’s father was forced to emigrate, and Brindsley himself left Delvin never to return.
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