Pat’s Film and TV work includes Life of Crime, Game of Thrones, Love/Hate 3, Moone Boy, Titanic – Blood And Steel, Roy, The Tudors, Crushproof, Ella Enchanted, Father Ted, Spy Game, Angelas Ashes, Ballykissangel, Batchelor’s Walk, The Butcher Boy, The Clinic, Evelyn, The Crooked Mile, Waterloo Dentures and Starfish. Pat has also worked extensively as a community artist on many different projects throughout Dublin.

At the Edinburgh Festival 2000, Pat won a Herald Angel for his performance in Pat McCabe’s Loco County Lonesome. In 2013 Pat wrote and appeared in Small Plastic Wars during the Fringe and was nominated for two Fringe Awards.

We chatted to him in advance of his show coming to The Civic on Friday, 25th September.

What do you wish someone had told you when you were starting out?
“Put down the biscuits, step away from the table and get back to work”
Also: Work harder, stop drinking and aim high and don’t rely on luck to advance your career.

If you hadn’t been an actor, what would you have done?
Actually I didn’t plan on being an actor. I went to Art College where I met Joe O’Byrne the director of Co-Motion Theatre Company and all the acting started from there. Parallel to acting I have always been involved in Youth and Community Arts so if acting hadn’t worked out I might have ended up as an art teacher. If I had to choose another career outside the arts I might be a baker, I can make a pretty good cinnamon bun.

Do you have any theatrical superstitions?
No. I don’t have any superstitions theatrical or otherwise though if I’m sharing a dressing room with other actors I respect their right to be crazy 🙂

What is your background with writing?
I’m a voracious reader. My Mother taught me to read before I went to school so I have always been interested in writing. I did some course with Film Base and through Dublin City Arts office but it was being handed awful scripts at auditions that prompted me to get serious about it. So when it was suggested to me that I pitch an idea for the Show in a Bag programme I really worked hard at it.

How did you come up with the story for Small Plastic Wars? What inspired you?
I’ve been involved in plastic modelling since I was seven or eight years old. In fact I’m the competition secretary for the Irish branch of the International Plastic Modeller’s Society whose annual show is on in the Plaza Hotel here in Tallaght 26th and 27th of September so people can catch that if they want to see the real world of plastic modelling which is sometimes stranger than the play.

It was Veronica and Grace Dyas that persuaded me to apply for the “Show in a Bag” programme and when I asked them what should I write about Veronica said “Write about that modelling club you’re in”. After that it was easy, I would drop my daughter at school and then go into the Dublin Fringe writing space and write until it was time to pick my daughter up. Every two weeks I would meet up with Gavin Kostick and read what I had out to him and he would go through it and suggest where the story might go. I knew I was on the right track after I read the first ten minutes to him and he said “Well at least it’s not shit”

Tell us about what audiences can expect when they see Small Plastic Wars?
A lot of laughs and a good story. The audience get really involved with the characters and there are a couple of twists where they go “Oh no!” out loud. Recently after performing the show at a festival in Finland I was walking down the street and two women came out of a restaurant and ran down the street after me to tell me how much they enjoyed the show (that’s the only time that happened)

Anyone with an obsessive hobby, whether it’s collecting shoes or playing golf, can expect their partner to elbow them in the ribs and whisper “that’s just like you!”

Is doing a one man show lonely?
It can be. I’ve just finished a three month run in A Month in the Country which had a cast of 12 and that was great fun. In big casts there’s always a bit of messing going on, both on and off the stage. The good thing about a one man show though is that it is very difficult to corpse yourself.

What’s next for you?
I’m working on another one man show about a man who wants to do the Camino but doesn’t want to leave Ireland so ends up doing it in Dublin between James’s street church and the last remaining tower block in Ballymun over and over again.I do every audition my agent sends me for and you never know what’s going to come in that way.

Do you have a particular role you would love to play?
I would like to play the lead in a long running TV series as a maverick detective who is also a baker. That or King Lear.


Small Plastic Wars opens at The Civic on Friday, 25th & Saturday 26th September 2015 at The Civic. Tickets are €16 & €12 concession and are on sale from our box office – 01 4627477 or online here.