This sparkling new play tells of the roller-coaster life of a forgotten Irish celebrity and invites a modern audience to reassess her legacy as a freelance artist at a time in Ireland when most women were expected to be fulltime housewives.
Broadcaster, writer, cookery expert and agony aunt Maura Laverty was a household name in Ireland for three decades. She had her own ESB-sponsored radio show on RTE for thirty years, where she dispensed advice on relationships and cooking. She also toured the country giving cooking demonstrations and encouraging housewives to use electricity for cooking and other labour-saving devices. In the ‘60s her iconic cookbook ‘Full And Plenty’ with its unique blend of recipes and stories was to be found in nearly every home in Ireland. She also wrote novels and short stories. Her work was often controversial and her novels were banned by the censors for their sexual frankness. In the 1950s she wrote three plays that saved The Gate Theatre from financial ruin. She wrote Ireland’s first ever television soap opera for RTE, Tolka Row.
Maura Laverty died in tragic circumstance in 1966 and her body was not discovered for nearly a week. In the play, Maura will be spirited back from the dead to appear in front of a live and online contemporary audience on the surreal This Was Your Life show, where interviewer Rip Riley will get her to talk about her life and work and cook some recipes from her books. He will also get her to reveal secrets and stories from her tumultuous past and to confront the price she paid for her success. How will a live audience and an online community of tweeters, bloggers and texters evaluate her life and legacy?
To coincide with the performance of ‘Maura Laverty This was your Life’ on the 28th March- OstaW8 are serving a pre-show dinner inspired by Maura’s Full and Plenty recipes at 6pm. Dinner and tickets to show cost €35 and can be bought through The Glens Centre website.