There was chitter last Saturday and there was banter. There was delicious muffins made by one special little girl. There was friendships and comradeship among everyone. But most of all there was a real learning experience to be in the company of Northern Irelands Nuala McKeever and to take part in a workshop hosted by her at Derry’s Playhouse. Titled ‘Get Your Act Together’ McKeever encouraged everyone to live life for yourself and not through or for someone else. She explained life as a drama. ‘Life is a drama and we write our own script’. How true her words are. Sometimes we forget that we are the writers of our own lives and yet continually fall into another trap. McKeever encouraged people to communicate. Not just talk to one another but to listen. There are many parts to communication and it’s important to find the right ones for you. McKeever is adamant that ‘the fastest way to get what you want is to listen to somebody else’. She also emphasised that when you stop trying, stuff happens. People try too hard sometimes to get to their goal, instead of taking time, and enjoying the ride, and suddenly you’ll find yourself there quicker than first imagined.dsc_7216
It was interesting to hear Nuala McKeever speak about her own private life and experiences. She allowed us, the group, into her life, and in turn, the group welcomed her into theirs.
I’d known McKeever as a stand up comedienne, actress and writer, but was quite taken aback at her ability to encourage people to believe in themselves. Her ability to explain simple parts of life, which we turn into mountains, was second to none. She simplified life’s trivialities and a sudden realisation dawned on people that ‘yes, we can do this’. We can live our lives the way we choose and be the people we want to be.
The group on Saturday consisted of both men and women which made it more interesting. Especially as Terry, a born entertainer amused all and sundry! Exercises were given out during the afternoon which saw people acting as toddlers, acting as high status individuals and low status to show and expose how we can be when putting on a front! Many people create masks to cover up the real self. dsc_7218Thanks to McKeevers advice all learned that these masks are not necessary and it’s OK to be YOU! McKeever’s final words on the day were ‘trust that your own voice is worth something and just do it’. Pretty sound advice for everyone.
The afternoon was organised by Ursula McHugh, director of The Creative Path at the Playhouse Theatre Derry.dsc_7249