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Mullingar is the perfect model for Dundalk Town Hall

Friday, Dec 6, 2002

Dear Sir

The Adelphi ballroom on the Long Walk opened its doors on St. Stephen’s Night, 1962. This virtually put an end to dancing in Town Hall.

The Town Hall went on fire in 1947. It did not re-open until 1953. Some of the larger theatrical companies in town such as the Dundalk Musical Society did not return there for twenty years. They opted to stay in the much smaller Dominican Hall.

Although there were some notable exceptions such as the De La Salle talent contests and the Italian concerts, one of which featured Pavarotti, there was very little theatrical activity in the Town Hall from the mid 1950s to the late 1960s.

The Arts Centre in Mullingar is based in the old Mullingar Town Hall. The auditorium of the all is almost identical in width, length and height to the auditorium of Dundalk Town Hall. Although an extension has been built recently, the state is almost identical. Mullingar Arts Centre has raked seating which can accommodate 407 persons. This seating is on a hydraulic system which means that the seating can be folded up like a concertina after a performance.

It is not uncommon for a full theatre performance to be staged to a seated audience followed shortly after by a dance attended by an entirely different group of people. In the same room!

The raked seats are moved back and tables and chairs are placed in the hall. Suitable lighting provides a club atmosphere. According to some ot the sound technicians employed there the acoustics of the hall are not affected by the rake.

I am well aware that this type of arrangement would not suit the many young and old groups of all natures who are seeking rehearsal space.

Frankly as an insider I think that the only thing that could please everyone in that respect is a vivid imagination. But it certainly would be an almost perfect answer to the problem of finding somewhere suitable to showcase the great talent that we have in our town.


Anthony O’Hagan.



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In Loving Memory of Grant Gallagher: Sept. 21, 1990 - Nov. 18, 2006