In her work as a theatre-maker and facilitator, Karen Minihan strives to capture the pathos and humour of the shared experience through careful and considered direction, support, encouragement and expectation. Essential to this process is the importance of inspired relationships and open connection between all the participants; actors, designers, directors and audiences.
Years of experience working with people through workshops, theatre productions and community projects have lead Karen to the realisation that sharing stories through creativity and performance can be deeply transformative and illuminating; that there is no beginning and no end to the relationships between people; and that this shared experience brings greater compassion.
Currently Karen is continuing to explore her own story and to guide others to find their creative voice through projects involving performance, writing and storytelling.
She is a member of the West Cork-based PlayActing Theatre, which continues to push the boundaries of what is possible in theatre-making, working on small intimate productions and larger explorations of performance.
Realising the importance of the shared experience she is documenting her wealth of knowledge of theatrical practice via her blog and podcasts.
A book – Extraordinary, ordinary Women: Untold Stories from the Founding of the State, and a short play – Home Rules.
This project, carried out by writer and theatre-director, Karen Minihan, invited the telling of stories of ordinary women in west Cork who lived in the time leading up to the War of Independence and Civil War, and to the founding of the Irish State.
In order to understand our history from that time and what was to follow, Karen believes these untold stories must be heard, some being shared outside their families for the first time. Her aim is to give voice to these women, for the purposes of understanding and reconciliation. Following a year of research and writing, thirteen stories have been collected into a book entitled, Extraordinary, Ordinary Women: Untold Stories from the Founding of the State. The book will be launched in March 2022.
One of the stories is the inspiration for a short play, Home Rules, which will be played by the very talented actor, Pauline O’Driscoll, on the day of the launch. Further details of future performances will be announced shortly.
This project is supported by Cork County Council’s Commemoration Grants Scheme 2020, and Uillinn: West Cork Arts Centre.