We begin our veritable feast of queer happenings at this year’s much anticipated Dublin Fringe Festival with one that obviously holds a special place in our hearts - The North Is Next (Project Arts Centre, September 7) - a zine coupled with a live event to spotlight and support the drive for queer and reproductive rights in Northern Ireland. We know it has already been brought to your attention earlier in these pages, but no harm in reminding!
Former GCN cover star, Scottee, teams up with a sterling group of collaborators to present Things We’ve Always Wanted To Tell You (Project Arts Centre, September 18-21), a look at the class system in Ireland from the perspective of working-class creatives.
Fried Plantains Collective will take over the national theatre with Black Jam (Abbey Theatre, September 7), an explosive combo of Irish trad-punk, aggressive Afro-punk, storytelling and savage hip-hop.
Oisín McKenna brings along his confronting Admin (Project Arts Centre, various dates between September 6-15). It explores the relationship between class, capitalism and health in a show about being poor, precarious and lonely.
Tara Brandel presents Circus (Smock Alley Theatre - Black Box, September 7 - 10). It is a mixture of male drag, pole dance, twerking and contemporary dance which looks at Direct Provision, MeToo, toxic masculinity and who gets to be Irish. Expect an exploration of the roles of masculinity, queerness a nd gender in our rapidly changing society.
Shadows (The Beer Market, September 7 - 13), from Derek Byrne, looks at the story of two ex-lovers who accidentally meet while searching for anonymous sex in a cruising area. It’s a play about having the courage to be emotionally vulnerably in a culture where casual sex is readily available.
Get ready for a riotous time with Club Comfort’s Comfort Carnival (National Stadium, September 7). Running from 12 noon ’til late, it’s a whole-day affair featuring workshops, panel discussions, performances and DJ sets. This is a party and a spiritual community encompassing ravers, lovers and freaks.
The hugely intriguing Vespertilio by Barry McStay promises an atmospheric production which looks at a man tasked with protecting endangered bats who meets a charming young runaway in the dark caves. The two men engage in a relationship in a show about love, lies and loneliness.
Let’s also take a quick spin through shows already featured in this issue - Vickey Curtis and Áine O’Hara’s love letter to a very Irish sport - GAA MAAD, Seán Kennedy’s achingly beautiful Nine Weeks, Maia Nunes’ hypnotic Incantation and drag collective Glitter HOLE’s hooley to end all hooleys - Púcaparty.
Remember though, there’s a whole city full of shows to catch, so best get grabbing those tickets now before they sell out.
Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
For a full lineup of all the shows and to get tickets, visit