Lovesong, a beautiful play written By Abi Morgan, an Emmy and BAFTA award-winning writer of theatre, film and television. Credits include The Hour, Suffragette and The Iron Lady comes to the Civic soon. We had a chat with Jenny who plays the younger female character in a play that a story of one couple, told from two different points in their lives – as young lovers in their late 20s and as worldly companions looking back on their relationship.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself, and where you grew up?
I live in a beautiful little village called Ballysaggart in West Waterford with my husband Dylan Kennedy. My parents, Mary and Donal are farmers; I have one brother, Kieran, two sisters Marie and Becky. On our farm we have cows, a dog called Bella, a pig called Wilbur and one hen called Penny because the fox ate the other seven.
What is your background in performing?
I loved drama in school and studies Drama and English in University College Cork. My earliest acting opportunities came from Brideview Drama in West Waterford who cast me in the roles of Laura in The Glass Menagerie and Bridget in Moonshine – the later production going on to win The All Ireland in 2005. My first professional acting job was playing Katie in Jim Nolan’s “The Salvage Shop”. I went on to do an acting degree at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. This was an incredible opportunity and was one of the most challenging and enriching experiences of my life. I got to work with excellent directors and play incredible roles.
What’s has been your career highlight to date?
A recent highlight is playing Mrs. O’ Leary in Call the Midwife for the BBC. I was a huge fan of the show so being on set was an unforgettable experience. I was treated like a queen, picked up in a stretch limo, brought to my own trailer and got to work with brilliant actors. Everyone was so friendly and I loved every minute of it. Other highlights are working with Sir Richard Eyre at the National Theatre on LIOLA and also Greg Doran’s KING LEAR for the Royal Shakespeare Company. I’ve a great passion for Shakespeare’s play so working with the RSC was a dream come true.
Tell us about the role you have in the play ‘Lovesong’
I play Margaret, she’s newly married to William. At the beginning of the play she’s young, excited and really looking forward to her life in a new country. Margaret changes a great deal in the play, it’s set in the 60’s and 70’s and this propels Margaret to find her voice and really search to find her full potential. Abi Morgan has done an exceptional job in honestly presenting the ups and downs of married life. I think the fact that Dylan and I are a real-life married couple brings an added poignancy and frisson to the story.
What can Tallaght audiences expect from the show?
’Lovesong’ is the story of one couple told from two different points in their lives. Dylan, (my actual husband) and I play the younger married couple and Sean Ahern and Mary Flavin Colbert play the same couple forty years later. The play moves backwards and forwards through time, the couples stories weave together and the play is full of surprises and beautiful moving moments.In January we performed the Irish premiere of ‘Lovesong’ in Garter Lane and we were blown away by the audience response. The show sold out and we had standing ovations every night.
Can you tell us a random fact about yourself?
I have a red 1972 Volkswagen Beetle that needs needs ‘some’ (well a lot really) of TLC. It’s my dream to fix it up properly and go on some epic Sunday drives.
29 & 30 Aug
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