If anyone fancies mixing their football with a bit of Art & Culture this week then they should take a trip down to Eden Quay in Dublin where writer Gemma Doorly has her play WAG running in Lanigan’s Bar every lunchtime this week.
Extratime had the good fortune to run into Gemma last week and learned all about her latest wheeze, a play set in the world of the football WAG. Not having seen her down at Richmond Park lately we quizzed her her football background, loyalties, and of course, the off-side rule.
“I actually don't know that much about the game itself”, she confessed. Ten out of ten for honesty, we thought, but why write about football unless it was to wax lyrical about the majesty of Joseph Ndo, or to extoll the virtues of a bank of Ultras in full voice?
“I would know a lot more about Coleen Rooney than Wayne Rooney. And after what seemed like an endless list of footballers cheating on their wives and girlfriends last year, and being humiliated in the press, I was fascinated as to why the women stay in these relationships. Is it really just for the money or do they in fact love their footballers?”
We tried again with the League of Ireland angle, wondering if Gemma had any particular loyalties in the domestic league. And we could tell that she wanted to say something that would make us happy but, bless her, she is a paragon of honesty.
“I know very little about League of Ireland football. I know Shamrock Rovers and that's about it I'm afraid. Sorry.”
Fair enough, we thought, we didn’t know much about plays, so we were kind of even on that score. Thankfully, Gemma was more than happy to give us the low down. W.A.G is a lunchtime show, which means that if you show up at 8pm you will be seven hours too late. It kicks-off at 1pm sharp in TheatreUpstairs@Lanigan’s Bar on Eden Quay, every day from July 16th to July 21st. It costs €10 to get in but, as Gemma pointed out, you do get your lunch as part of that. Now there’s something the football clubs could learn from; soup and a toasty with every ticket at Tolka Park? Come on lads, you know it makes sense.
Given the play’s football background we wondered, if the audience liked a particular bit of the play, would they be allowed to show their appreciation in football-chant form? To our surprise this was something that seemed to find genuine favour.
“A football like chant during the show would be hilarious”, said Gemma, clearly impressed by the idea. “The play is essentially a cat fight between a W.A.G and the mistress of her footballer husband and a few times, women especially, have made funny comments out loud from the audience when it gets particularly bitchy!”
It all sounds like a bit of a hoot, and if the play is as much fun as Gemma was then we would recommend it highly. As we parted we tried to impress her with a bit of trivia. Did she know, we asked, that one of extratime’s contributors appeared in Paul Mercier’s football based film “Studs”? She didn’t.