18 May 2022

Snapshot: Lockdown comedy comes to Longford’s Backstage Theatre

Snapshot: Lockdown comedy comes to Longford’s Backstage Theatre

Backstage Theatre is proud to present the Hawk’s Well Theatre’s national tour of Snapshot by Miriam Needham.

This original work of theatre was conceived and created during lockdown and is now set to tour nine venues across Ireland during April 2022, and is coming to Backstage on Thursday, April 14.

Miriam wanted to create a piece about lockdown as more than a set of rules and statistics, to represent the human experience.

We know about the big picture - offices closed, town centres looking like scenes from an apocalypse film of daily statistics of case numbers.

But what about on a smaller scale? What did lockdown mean for communities and the individuals within those communities?

Snapshot aimed to find out.

Through 44 real-life interviews with people in the Sligo area, the project soon had a wealth of perspectives, experiences, and journeys to share.

The task then was to focus it down, to represent this plethora of experience in a human story. Through a process of development, it became a story of two sisters trying to connect in a disconnected world and finding their footing in a changing landscape.

Snapshot is a record of a global event through a local lens. The story line follows two sisters, played by Miriam Needham and Nichola MacEvilly, who are living in the same house at the start of the pandemic.

Interspersed with audio extracts from the real-life interviews, Snapshot explores the different ways in which we remember and in which we cope as the sisters try to connect in a disconnected world.

Through their relationship, we explore perspective, family and shared memories, all with humour and a lightness of touch.

Writer Miriam Needham says: “I felt so lucky to have all these one-on-one conversations with people I didn’t know … the recordings feel very precious to me. I felt a responsibility to use them quite carefully when it came to structuring the play. The result is something that I think shares a lot, without ever being exposing.”

Director John Carty says: “What I like about Snapshot is that it is a reflection of the feelings of so many. The viewer connects with the piece because they recognise themselves.”

Hawk’s Well Theatre Director Marie O’Byrne says: “I’ll be honest... I wasn’t sure I wanted to see anything to do with Covid-19 when I walked into the theatre for the premiere of Snapshot last August.

“But what unfolded over the course of the next 40 minutes was so thought-provoking and emotional... such a rewarding return to the magic of live theatre.

“For me the raw emotion of hearing the voices of a whole range of ordinary people talk about how they navigated the craziness of lockdown drove home the shared nature of what we have all experienced and offered a cathartic, healing experience that I hadn’t expected.”

Tickets, costing €16/€14 are available to book now on 043 3347888 or

Hailed as “a real triumph” during its Premiere in August 2021, don’t miss your chance to catch Snapshot this April.

This is a Hawk’s Well Theatre production created with the support of the Arts Council and Creative Ireland and Sligo County Council.

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