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HELLO, BEAUTIFUL incredible Humans! 

Is it a FESTIVAL of NEW WORK, you’re looking for?!

SCENE + HEARD: The Festival of New Work returns to Smock Alley Theatre this February. The festival is a veritable smorgasbord of unique ideas – think creative tapas! Offering a unique opportunity for artists across all artforms to try new things that they believe will inspire audiences, Scene + Heard showcases excerpts of never before seen work in front of its lively adventurous audiences, who get to have their say and become part of the creation and development of future full scale productions. 


The 112 featured presentations, showcasing over 600 performers, designers, directors, producers, creators and writers, and based in all four corners of the country, have been selected from over 500 submissions. Each year the stories in the zeitgeist are never what you expect, and this year was no different. This is our most diverse, international programme to date and is brimming with bold ideas and blending art forms! inside you’ll find Japanese Letter Writing, Lithuanian Folk Chanting, Bharatanatyam Indian Dance, a Brazilian Extravaganza, AI Aerial, Malaysian Millennials, Bad Girls, Trans Men, Drag Kings, Sapph-Bros, Bi-lingual Banjo’s, Sax and Synth, Francis Darcy the farting ballerina and Astrophysics for dogs! All this and more delivered to you by the best up and coming talents and many faces and names you already know and love well.


Audience feedback is invited for all performances, either via in-person secret ballots, Q&A, digital forms, or on social media or via email. The feedback is given directly to the artists, providing a vital insight into audience perceptions and helping them develop their work. This means that, you, the audience, get to shape, and help create, the future creative landscape. 


What to expect from the 2024 programme:


A truly diverse programme with no overarching theme. You might see a one man viking comedy show in 2% Viking, sink into the immersive installation Rose, or partake in an intercultural happening in Samba & Sunsets: A Brazilian Extravaganza. Laugh if you are human in HUMAN // ROBOT, Japanese letter writing is not dead in Grouchy Letters, stick it to the man (well Sister Assumpta anyway) in Mortal Sin,  meet talented sore losers who just won’t let it go in We Regret to Inform You, walk in a world made for “pretty people” in The Pretty Pill, follow an idiotic film critic in a warzone in The Letterboxder, Ireland’s carcass is ripe for picking in Vultureland, your life might not be your own in Compos Mentis, dogs are in space in An Introduction to Astrophysics for Very Good Dogs, two makers try everything they ever wanted to in plastic, love mooves in mysterious ways in Sacred Old Cow, James Joyce brought to life in flashback mashups in Just a Song at Twilight, and obviously Cornucopia Jones Wants You to Succeed! Don’t let the small ones miss Francis Darcy: The Fartsy Darcy Ballerina.


Want to experience the very first step in show development? The rehearsed readings this year are wildly varied. Political fires in Kildare Street, home truths in a hayshed in Seeing Around Corners, fertility journeys in Fingers Crossed, the dark side of gambling in The 3:30 at Cheltenham, Victorian morals in Victor Nihilist, Victorian Scientist, a comedy about transition in Rose+Bud, a fish tank tragedy in Glass Places and a queer riff on Pride + Prejudice in A Proud, Ill-Natured Bi.


Enjoy watching performers sweat? Then choose an improvised, interactive and dangerously devil may care show like Happen/Chance where you pick the props and the first and last words, or immerse yourself in an improvised future with Just One Law. Witness 20 Minutes of Deliberate Absurdity from Birdwoman or marvel at the mayhem in Bum Notes: The Improvised Musical. 


Look inward with our shows exploring our humanity (or lack of it): unforeseen homecomings force adult siblings together in Kathy Comes Home, don’t walk on the Resin, a loner becomes obsessed with his plants in Plantmancer, the last known female Jester of the modern world performs for you in Jester’s Privilege, a comedy about not having an iota as to what to do with yourself in In Praise of Me, You, and All We’re Going Through, movement as an instrument of change in Transitions, revisiting your past in yellowing, two freedom fighters in one prison cell in Kālā Pānī, Ireland’s greatest photographer presented as never before in TROUT, being in an all-girls school when you’re secretly not a girl in Bad Girl: A One Man Show, a poetic encounter in A Shack on the Edge of the World, sinister sisterly playtime in The Doll’s Hospital, republicans loving Princess Diana in Don’t tell Dad about Diana, no unnecessary journeys in Doomscroller, and what can you tell by the contents of someone’s pocket in Secrets Secrets Shh!


Comedy lovers are spoiled with Francis Breen’s What if he’s normal?, Diane O’Connor’s Chapter 40, Jim Elliot’s White Collar Fraud, Kate Feeney’s Platonic Love, Simon Hennessy’s Notice Box and Sophia Cadogan’s Princess Melancholy. Becky Cheatle recounts her transition through her love for Star Wars in Starfighter, John Spillane is taking comedy into the 21st century with his CGI Comedy SPECTACULAR!! IN 3D, and Stephen Colfer is taking Unboxing to a whole new level. Fionn Cleary is Haunted, Erin McGathy lifts the lid on being a Civil Servant, and follows the foolproof anxiety-based workout plan with Brian Garvan’s Last-Minute Body. Wash it all down with Stand up, Smack down! where comedy and wrestling collide.


Increase the heat with our shows about sex + sensuality and all the feelings; build the perfect man in Welcome to the Haus of Sapph-Bros, dance between body and soul in A Dance of Two Halves, there’s wet, hot, heavy work in HEAT, a people pleaser causes a mess on the dancefloor in I Can’t Do A Cartwheel, two are looking for a third to join in in Wide Open, how hard can it be to swing in Let’s Try Swingin’, diddle miss daisy in Canoe, take and eat; this is their bodies in Men Eating Dinner, two’s company but three’s a crew in Clyde Inside, a mixed race guide to fucking up in BEASTS, a chaotic jountry through Elle’s internet history in Close All Tabs, and meet That Couple From Hell.


Whodunnit lovers can get their synapses firing; unravel the mystery of Nancy’s misery in Nancy Blue to Succeed!, conspiracy, treachery and lace collide in Laced, no trace was left of Mr Bergmann of Deadman’s Point, the path to a crime scene liest through national cuisine in Borscht, a henchman’s tale in You Got It Boss! and a real life Dragatha Christie Mystery in Who Robbed Annie Queeries?


Musical treats are stunning this year: Ea explore a tapestry of folk music from around the world in Beneath the Currents, Teatro Nua bring you sax, synth and savage beats in SHELF, immerse yourself in the spirit of Lithuanian folk music in Encoded Voices, you’ll never look at masculinity the same way after Cleanup on Aisle Masculinity. Or want music that makes you go heh?, then Keep Walkin’ is just your ticket.

And for those who delight in clever lyrics, jazz hands or dance routines check out our plethora of musical theatre extravaganzas. There’s definitely one here for every taste. Explore the power of drag in Safety in Sequins, students battle in Cadence, figure out what’s important in What Matters, meet old spiders from folklore in The Spiders, revenge and redemption are on show in Stars in their Lies, Victorian indulgences reign in Robbie Ross? And who hasn’t asked themselves DeValera – Republican or Jazz loving spy? DeV De Musical answers you. 


For fans of physical theatre and dance the festival is your oyster: The silent movie era is back in Les Picker Pockets, hang with Jill as she untangles life in LYF101, join in an unusual meditation in The Void, explore human connections in how do you remember me?, peek into a future inspired by Eliot’s The Wasteland in da.da.da, experience a beacon of Irish tradition – the GAA in a new way with Ham Sandwiches and Discipline, and see the sisters in Deirfiúr. 


The circus has come to Scene + Heard: free yourself with From Fear to Freedom, ambition and AI combine in Stop Generating, the human psyche is on display in MAKOSH, the only way out is through in Phaedrus, journey through heartbreak + grief in The Lost Bride and witness a death-defying circus act in Malignant Humour. 


Spoken word is loud this year: Daragh Fleming performs live with The Hole focusing on men’s mental health, Shawn Uyosa explores his childhood relationship with his pet chickens in A Tale of Two Chickens, a man wakes caillte sa choill (lost in the woods) in Scar, for once a positive post-apocalyptic show in Earthman Bob + the Daisie Chain, and finally tar ar aistear físe agus fuaime ó litríocht na Gaeilge go hip hap Laidineach i Máirtín agus Jenny from the Block. 


And for the length of the festival, the stunning Smock Alley Banquet Hall will be home to Triumvirate, our visual arts exhibition where a trio of fantastic artists are showing their new works. Jordan Cassidy focuses on camp subjects painted in an abstract realism manner, often pulling from his experience in fields such as queer nightlife and club photography. Ró Dennis deals with themes of cultural identity, femininity and our natural world. And Peter Smyth’s work is primarily centred around the convergence of Digital Art & Painting, their ontological differences and their collaborative potential



Tickets are sold in 45min time slots that will comprise of either one show, or a couple of complimentary performances. 

TICKETS: Early Bird €13 (until 4pm of show day) / On The Door €15

VENUE: Smock Alley Theatre, Dublin 8 



TWITTER: @SceneAgusHeard


INSTAGRAM: @Sceneandheardfestivalofnewwork

TIK TOK: @sceneagusheard


PHONE: (01) 6770014

Our call out is simple: we ask ARTISTS from all over the country for their most outrageous, imaginative, enthusiastic, multi-genre, awe-inspiring, tear-inducing, laughter-medicinal, audience-wowing ideas to tantalise our tastebuds and catapult your brain waves on to our stages. The main idea – this must be new work, never before seen it's first outing onto a stage, in front of an audience. We programme all genres and types of presentations - music, dance, comedy, theatre, improv, spoken word, drag, circus, aerial or all the above in a symphonic smorgasbord. If these past months (years? – what is time?) have shown us anything, it is that the depths of imagination in our industry is unending and indefatigable, so come witness those fires kept lit and get those lightbulbs flashing.







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