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INTERVIEW: Sharon Byrne’s Gutted to make its debut at Marlowe Studio

13:27 16 February 2017

Sharon Byrne

Sharon Byrne

Archant

The play is a black comedy set in 1980s Dublin

Sharon Byrne GuttedSharon Byrne Gutted

Gutted had its humble beginnings in playwright Sharon Byrne’s little house by the sea in Whitstable, and now it’s set to have its debut at Canterbury’s Marlowe Studio.

The play is a black comedy set in 1980s Dublin. Delores, Breda and Deirdre work in a fish factory and relay the stories of their often mundane lives in the factory staffroom. Through dynamic monologue, pure Irish storytelling and comedy, the women then dramatise the events of a very significant night in their lives.

Speaking to KoS, Ms Byrne, relays how the idea for Gutted comes from her upbringing in Dublin.

She explains: “While living there, I came across young women who were working hard for a living in the local fish factory.

Sharon Byrne guttedSharon Byrne gutted

“I didn’t know it then, but these women had a huge impact on my life. I’d see them every day walking by my grandparents’ house, and tried to imagine what it would be like to be them. They’d walk by my window wearing plastic caps (shower caps), blue coats and Wellington boots, smoking roll-ups and chatting about their day.

“They never stopped chatting and laughing, and they were of all ages ranging from 16 to 50.”

Ms Byrne, who supports women’s movements, has great admiration for the women she’s featured in Gutted.

“The women were the impetus for me to strive for more in my life,” she comments. “Not that there was anything wrong with working in a fish factory. I had the utmost respect for these women. Fair play to them. They worked hard and played hard; they were providing for their families. They were tough hard-working women and I admired them.

“But they were stuck in many ways too and seemed contented with the cards that life had dealt them. I wasn’t.”

Gutted is coming to the Marlowe Studio from February 21 to 23.

For tickets visit marlowetheatre.com.

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