01 December 2016


The picture above was hanging in a pub in Soho.  The students could not remember which pub they took the picture at but Nikki Christensen searched on the web and found it.  It is The Duke of Argyll pub on Brewer Street.   Well, 
we ended the London portion of the semester on November 19th.  The last week the students dealt with exams, papers, and projects.  After their acting final on Tuesday they registered for classes for next semester.  See first photo below.

For acting class they did scenes from Caryl Churchill's Love and Informtion.  They performed it in St. Paul's Church in the round!  Excellent job done by all!  After class Tony , the students, and I went to William Morris Whetherspoons in Hammersmith for lunch.

Jake and Andrew joined us after the performance.  Ian and Diana went home to go work on papers.

On Saturday we took off for Dublin to start the two program at the the Gaiety School of Acting, Ireland's premiere acting school. 10 of us left from Heathrow airport!

Look who someone was waiting for at the Dublin airport.  Wonder if he showed up?

We checked into the Abbey Court Hostel which is on the Leffey River and that night attended a production of Donegal , a musical play with a country western type theme, at the Abbey Theatre.

The Samuel Beckett Bridge.  It is in the shape of an Irish Harp.

Andrew was fascinated with how tiny Irish pre-packaged pancakes are.  Can't compare to USA pancakes!!!!

This here is the BEST Hot Chocolate it Dublin.  It is a Guinness Hot Chocolate, and I sweet-talked the barista on teaching me how to make it.  Really, really delicious.  Best Hot Chocolate I ever had!  Can't believe I got their secret recipe.


The Gaiety School is on the right.  More on the school in the next blog.
     Courtney is obsessed with Colin Donoghue from Once Upon a Time. He along with Aiden Turner from Podark and The Hobbit, Colin Farrell, Olivia Wilde, and Moe Dunford from Vikings and Partick's Day are all from the Gaiety School.

A Leprechaun on a smoke break!

Victoria found her pub!

Throughout the two weeks we attended many shows.  Mainstream at the Project Arts Centre and at Smock Alley Theatre we saw two great one-person shows.  A Fit Fife for a Revolution which was excellent and Patrick Sutton's play, Iscariot starring Charlie Hughes.  Here is Patrick and I and the students studying at Gaiety in front of the set or Iscariot.

Courtney organizing the scenes and monologues she is working on for the showcase.

The day after we arrived and the day before classes started some of the students went on the Guinness Tour.

Again the Guinness in Ireland is wonderful.  Does not taste like Guinness in other countries because there are no preservatives in it.  Here the students are learning how to properly pour a pint of Guinness.  They are now all expert pourers!!!!

I think this Irishman is really pleased with himself!

For the past several years we have celebrated  Thanksgiving at the Abbey Hostel in Ireland.  So I commandeered the kitchen again this year and made turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes (with brown sugar, honey, and Irish whiskey, pecans and marshmallows) carrots with honey, cranberry sauce(which we forgot to eat),  corn on the cob, green bean casserole or hot dish as they say in Minnedota, and pumpkin pies the students made.  Claudette from Paris, Heather from DC, and Nora from Brussels also joined us.  Martin and Patrick could not attend the dinner this year much to their dismay so they sent Rory from the Gaiety School to join us!

Claudette, Zach, Rory, and Nora.  Claudette and Nora are in the acting classes with our students and Rory does PR for Gaiety.

 Methinks they are stuffed!

I left a care package of Thanksgiving dinner for Patrick, Martin, and Karen.  Patrick seems to be enjoying it.


I took the students to Galway for the weekend.  We arrived to find out that Barnacles Hostel did not have our room reservations!!!!  They were booked by mistake for Dublin, and they had no rooms left.  We ended up staying the first night at Snoozles and the second night in Kinsay Hostel, both very, very nice places.  We went to the Xmas fair and then my favorite Galway Pub with a nice fireplace and music!  

THE place for fish and chips in Galway!  Had cod on Saturday night!  My back went out so students brought fish and chips back to the hostel for me....yummy!

Dillon's, the best place to buy an Irish ring and it has a small museum in the back with the smallest ring ever made.

MacDonald's in Galway.  Can't believe they did it! I did too...


Jake, Andrew, and Diana went to the Cliffs of Moher on Sunday and took a later bus back to Dublin.  Here are their photos.

Proof he was pushed!


Throughout the two weeks students were taken on various cultural trips including a walking tour of Dublin with Marie, St. Michan's Church where they went into the crypt and saw dead bodies from the medieval period, the National Library's Yeats Exhibition, Little Museum of Dublin, and EPIC, a museum of Emigration.  Here are photo's from that museum which included a light show.

In addition to the other plays we got to see a panto, Robin Hood and His Seven Merry Men at the Gaiety Theatre (not related to the school).  Panto is strictly a UK artform.

Our last show in Ireland was  The Heiress at The Gate Theatre.  Here we are having tea served in real cups and saucers during the interval.

"Wishing you all a Merry Christmas!"  - Jake the Irish Elf

Next blog will be about our showcase in Dublin that the students will be performing tomorrow at 5 pm Ireland time!  Until then....