The Safety Catch

Friday 27th May 8pm (Door Open 7.30)
Saturday 28th May 8pm (Door Open 7.30)

“There’s a green blur and a grey blur, I try and stay on the grey one” – Joey Dunlop

The Glens Centre has developed for stage a new play celebrating the prowess of Ireland’s most famous sporting family – the motorcycle road racing Dunlop dynasty from County Antrim.
The play is set at a moment in time when Michael Dunlop, a superhero of road racing and the latest in line of the most decorated dynasty in any sport, considers whether to continue racing after the family’s most recent loss, the death of his brother William at Skerries in 2018.
This is a world where mortal risk is the price of following your passion and tragedy is the often extracted toll. On the eve of the Isle of Man TT 2022, The Safety Catch brings motorcycle road racing, the world’s most dramatic and dangerous sport, to the stage for the first time.
Through an imagined dialogue with his father Robert’s crew chief and lifelong friend, Liam Beckett (Belfast actor Fra Gunn), Michael Dunlop (Antrim actor Andrew McCracken) examines the glory his obsession brings him, his acute awareness of its possible consequences and his dread of a time when it is no longer part of his life.
For the rest of us, do the chances these racers take offend our idea of a civilised society? Are they a throwback to a more heroic, but perhaps, barbaric age? Or are they symbolic of something that often seems dormant but remains important somewhere in our psyche? Do we still sense that life is never so vivid as when risk, mortal risk, lingers around every corner?
Directed by Joe O’Byrne – an experienced Dublin-based director, whose most recent work is The Cordelia Dream for New York’s Irish Repertory Theatre in 2021. With his own Co-Motion Theatre Company he directed ‘Frank Pig says Hello’, Patrick McCabe’s own adaption of his Booker-shortlisted novel ‘The Butcher Boy’. With Upbeat Productions he co-wrote, with Roddy Doyle, and directed the stage version of Doyle’s ‘The Woman Who Walked Into Doors’.
Written by Nick Snow – journalist, businessman, writer and biker. He co-wrote and co-produced the film ‘Prisoners of the Moon’, premiered at the Dublin International Film Festival 2019, and is the author of the novel ‘The Rocket’s Trail’, (Arena Books 2009).
Produced by Johnny Gogan who follows up his obsession with machines last demonstrated with ‘Black Ice’ (2013), the Netflix streaming feature about boy and girl racers. Gogan’s other features include the Netflix documentary ‘Hubert Butler Witness to the Future’ (2016), ‘The Last Bus Home’ (1997), ‘Mapmaker’ (2001) and the more recent ‘Prisoners of the Moon’ (2019) and ‘Groundswell’ (2021).

8pm Ticket €15/12/10