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Tense new drama to open soon at the MAC

Martin closes local trilogy

Andrea Irvine and Jimmy Doran Andrea Irvine and Jimmy Doran
By Staff Reporter

WEST Belfast playwright and newly-appointed Belfast Ambassador Martin Lynch is planning to launch the powerful climax and final instalment of The Ulster Trilogy this September at the MAC.

The trilogy, a series of three plays which explore the state of the North today, already includes Sam Millar’s ‘Brothers in Arms’ and Ron Hutchinson’s ‘Paisley and Me’.

Based on a true story, ‘Meeting at Menin Gate’ deals with the controversial issue of survivors and victims. The play explores the scene left behind by the Troubles in which politicians endlessly debate whether Northern Ireland should have a Truth Commission.

On a cross-community peace and reconciliation tour of World War I battle sites, Liz, a Protestant nurse, meets Terry, an ex-IRA gunman.  In a hotel room in Ypres, Belgium, they open a bottle of wine and confront some painful secrets from the past.   Will this be a two-person Truth Commission or simply raw, naked revenge?

Martin Lynch says he has been wanting to write the play for “quite a while”.

“Whilst it’s based on a true story, some of my own experiences of Belfast in the 1970s are in there,” said Martin. “Consequently, I regard myself as both a victim and a perpetrator. I know people will see this as controversial but let them come along and see the play and judge for themselves.”

Directed by Matt Torney, originally from North Belfast, the production features some of the country’s brightest talent.

Dublin-based actress Andrea Irvine will make an appearance on the Belfast stage as Liz in the production. Andrea recently gave a highly acclaimed performance as Lady Macbeth at The Lyric and is “very happy to be working in Belfast again”.

Andrea said: “I always love coming back to Belfast, especially to play a meaty role like Liz in Meeting at Menin Gate. This is an intense and powerful script, and I am really looking forward to the challenge.”

As well as Andrea, Matt will be working with Marty Maguire (Dancing Shoes, Chronicles Of Long Kesh), James Doran (Brothers In Arms, The Christening) and Maria Connolly (Scenes From A Big Picture, Dancing Shoes).

Meeting at Menin Gate will preview at the MAC on Wednesday, September 4 and Thursday, September 5. For information on tickets call 028 9023 5053 or visit


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