THE UCD Drama Society (Dramsoc) has recently been asked by university employees to stop using areas near offices as rehearsal space. This request was made after Dramsoc had been using the area around delivery door four, underneath the James Joyce Library as an ‘ad hoc’ rehearsal space in the lead up to this year’s Irish Student Drama Association’s (ISDA) festival which was held in Limerick earlier this month.
“We rehearse wherever we can, usually in the theatre or in any of the little alcoves around the Arts Block,” explained the outgoing Dramsoc Auditor, Conor McKenna. “Our two main spots are under each stairwell where the lifts are and the university has no problem with us rehearsing there.”
“However, recently there had been so many plays on that we thought we’d try to rehearse at door four where the deliveries are made,” Mr McKenna continued. “We had four plays going to ISDA and two other shows on, all vying for rehearsal spaces. You can understand why we were trying to take all the space we could get.”
It is understood that the staff made no specific complaints about members of Dramsoc but merely put up a notice asking them to no longer use this area as they found the noise created a “distraction.” Rehearsals in this area ceased at once.
Mr McKenna does not believe that the loss of this rehearsal space will have any negative repercussions for DramSoc as it is “very rare for so many plays to be on at once.”
In fact, Mr McKenna commented that overall he was “actually quite happy” with the rehearsal space which had been made available to Dramsoc this year. He was particularly pleased with the Newman Building’s staff’s willingness to let Dramsoc use any spare rooms so long as it was before eleven in the morning and after two in the afternoon.
However, Mr McKenna also made it clear that this could become an issue next year if Dramsoc was not allocated a specific rehearsal space in the new theatre being built in the Student Centre, the contruction of which will commence this summer.
“In the Arts Block we could always find some little alcove or room to rehearse in without annoying anyone. The new Student Centre just doesn’t offer that,” stated Mr McKenna. “We couldn’t rehearse in the corridors outside other societies’ offices so it is very important that there is at least one designated rehearsal area for Dramsoc next year.”