WATCH: Tullamore student wins national playwright competition

Inspired by local nursing home residents

Justin Kelly


Justin Kelly


WATCH: Tullamore student wins national playwright competition

WATCH: Tullamore student wins national playwright competition

A Tullamore teenager has scooped the overall prize in the 5th annual Schools Playwright competition as part of the RTE All-Ireland Drama Festival.

16-year-old Emma Flaherty from the Sacred Heart Secondary School in Tullamore emerged victorious thanks to her play inspired by older people in her community.

She explained: "In our school, we do the Gaisce Awards, and for my community involvement, I visit my local nursing home every Friday for an hour."

"It was all inspired from there," Emma told RTE. The play centres on a young nursing home volunteer, Cillian and a resident called Bridget who he befriends.

The play is about the connection of people across the generations, but it also comes with a surprise ending where Bridget finds out that Cillian is in fact her long lost grandson. 

As part of her prize, Emma was treated to a performance of her script at the awards ceremony in the Dean Crowe Theatre in Athlone on Wednesday, May 2. 

"Looking at it on the paper, it's completely different, then you see in on stage and thank 'wow' I actually wrote that," Emma commented. She described her win as "a big honour."


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