January.  A time for new shoots.  New beginnings.  In the park the daffodils start to make their presence felt.  The gentle fall of the first snowdrops.  For us in The Civic Theatre the beginning of the year is a buzzy time.  It’s Tenderfoot time.  60 transition year students from schools from all over South Dublin County descend on the theatre.  Full of ideas and energy and passion and creativity.  They come together to design, rehearse and perform plays written by their peers.  Plays by and for young people.  Exploring their lives and their world.  Seeking to understand the wider world.  

We pushed the start date out a little this year because of the pandemic.  We knew that everything would be in crisis just like it was last year and we wanted to give ourselves a little bit of time to adjust and adapt if we had to.  Over the last two years we have gotten really good at adjusting and adapting.

Late last year we made a promise.  Unless shut down by an alien invasion, or the government, we would deliver a performance programme this year.  It wouldn’t be live, we couldn’t guarantee that, but we could film them and that’s what we did.  Characters’ costumes were designed, made and assembled by young designers.  Original music was written and soundscapes compiled by young sound designers and composers.  And now that the editing is complete, we are delighted to announce the arrival of this year’s performance programme.


This year’s programme comes in 4 parts each accessed through a dedicated link.  Click, insert the password, and enjoy.  The password is available through participants, for friends and family, and through our participating schools.  If you don’t fall into either of those categories and would like to view this year’s Tenderfoot plays contact our marketing department (click here to e-mail) and we’ll give you the key!

Short Plays

This link provides access to the following three short plays. 

  • Hide & Seek by Earl John Villaneuva with Danga Mansuk and Isabel Evans, sound by Christopher Foley & Aaliyah Gilmer
  • 8.52 a.m. by Rebecca Ní Mháille with Mily Mukalel, Clíona Ní Chonchuir and Jack Finn, sound by Tyler Keegan
  • Sanctuary by Robyn Power with Shane Halpin and Matthew McMahon, sound by Christopher Foley & Aaliyah Gilmer

Short plays are usually about 5 minutes long and are very adaptable to the format of film.  A short play gives us a glimpse into a character or a set of characters in a particular moment in time.

Long Plays

This link provides access to the following two long plays.

  • Silent Night by Isabel Greene with Kate Delahunty and Dylan Whyte, sound by Tyler Keegan
  • greenbeanswearsjeansx by Aisling Coilféir with Saffron D McCarthy, Chuka Agu, Robyn Hooper, Jack Minahan, Jamie Gallagher and Natasha Lawlor, with sound by Jude Woodfull

We develop our writers in Tenderfoot through our Writing For Theatre Programme, April each year, and our follow up Summer Writing Intensive, August of each year.  Our longer plays are substantial works that dig a little deeper into a set of characters in a particular situation.  Silent Night explores the dynamic of a break up through its characters – The Girl & The Boy whilst greenbeanswearsjeansx explores the ups and downs experienced by a group of friends over the course of a school year.  For your information there is some vernacular language and references to sexuality and sexual activity in these plays.  greenbeanswearsjeansx also refers to mental health issues including suicide. 

Devised Pieces

This link provides access to the following two devised pieces.

  • Dream Piece for Voices & Music by & featuring Gabriel Tumanan with the cast – Freya Horan, Christopher Nagle and Holly Teague, with David Donnelly on guitar
  • We Didn’t Start The Fire devised by Davey Kelleher and the cast, Jodie Byrne, Grace Cox, Tara Curran, Hannah Eivers, Julia Gocman, Sonny Houlihan, Samuel Ihentuge, Aaron King, Cormac MacDermott, Killian Maguire, Danga Mansuk, Caoimhe McGee, Gradece Mendes, and Jessica Moffitt

Devised pieces of theatre are created collectively during the rehearsal process by the cast under the guidance of the director.  On day one of rehearsal there is no script.  Through workshop activities and improvisation characters are developed and a storyline emerges.  In Tenderfoot we like to include devised work in each programme as it allows us to experiment with form.  This can be seen this year in Dream Piece for Voices & Music which could be described as a concert for voice and guitar exploring the coexistence of the external and internal worlds of a young guy at a party.  The starting point for We Didn’t Start The Fire was the development of character.  The setting of a school ball provided a setting where all of the characters might be on one particular night with the story unfolding over distinct scenes between 2/3 characters at a time.

Sound & Music EP

This link provides access to an audio experience, a special project by the Tenderfoot Sound Design & Music Composition Team.  The EP is designed to be listened to on headphones.  

  • Cutting Strings (EP)

Track 1 – Two Ends of the Same Branch by Kathy Okoeguale and Saoirse Sheridan
Track 2 – Split by Keren Agbassah and Naomi Tshilos
Track 3 – Marionette by Alberto Gomez Munoz and David Donnelly

Participating Schools 2021/2022

Assumption Secondary School
Blessington Community College
Coláiste Bríde
Coláiste Cois Life
Coláiste de hÍde
Collinstown Park Community College
Deansrath Community College
Firhouse Educate Together Secondary School
Greenhills Community College
Holy Family Community School
Kingswood Community College
Lucan Community College
Moyle Park College
Old Bawn Community School
Our Lady’s School
Palmerstown Community School/Pobalscoil Iosolde
Rockbrook Park School
St. Kevin’s Community College
St. Mark’s Community School
St. Paul’s Secondary School
Tallaght Community School
Templeogue College

Kindly Supported by South Dublin County Council and The Arts Council