The Group

Rush Dramatic Society (RDS) was founded in 1927 and is probably one of the oldest groups in the country. They are based in the Millbank Theatre, Rush, North County Dublin. From the 1950's they competed on the festival circuit culminating in the 1980's by qualifying and appearing at All-Ireland Festivals. Happily, after an absence of 25 years they are delighted to have qualified for the All-Ireland and look forward to performing in Ballyduff.
The Play
"The Problem" is a popular comic piece dating originally from 1968 but updated to make it more contemporary in 2003. It opened in Boston in the late sixties and played in New York and initially, as Gurney himself puts it, "it didn't make much of a splash" and that "it took the Brits to kick-start it", proving very popular on its British run and being broadcast by the BBC. The plot revolves around a couple in their thirties who have completed ten years of marriage. In a late afternoon in the studio of the husband, the wife enters and announces her pregnancy… numerous and intricate confessions are revealed. The Problem is a shrewd, surprising, and hilarious American exploration on the repercussions when dull domesticity and sexual fantasy collide.  
Pete GurneyThe Author
A.R. ("Pete") Gurney was born in 1930 in Buffalo, New York. He graduated from Williams College in 1952, served as an officer the Navy, and afterwards attended the Yale School of Drama. For many years, he taught literature at Massachusetts Institute of Technology but moved to New York in 1982 to devote more time to writing for the theatre. He is now a member of the Theatre Hall of Fame and of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Gurney has been married to his wife Molly for over fifty years. They have four children, and eight grandchildren, and now live in Roxbury, Connecticut and New York City.
Interesting Bits
TRIVIA 1: Gurney was nominated twice for the Pulitzer Prize for Drama - in 1985 for "The Dining Room" and in 1990 for "Love Letters".
TRIVIA 2: In the U.S. a gurney is another name for what we call a hospital trolley. Imagine the author listening to a conversation about somebody spending all night on a gurney .... 
QUOTE 1: "A man and his dog is a sacred relationship. What nature hath put together let no woman pull asunder"
QUOTE 2: "Gurney writes like a caterpillar with gloves on" (Critic, Clive Barnes, in a review of one of Gurney's early works)

Thank You

West Waterford Drama Festival 2020 – Message from Festival Director Clodagh Walsh


If using Sat Nav, be careful when inputting. There are at least three Ballyduffs in County Waterford. In particular, there is a village called Ballyduff about five miles from Waterford City. This is not us! Coordinates 52° 08' 51" N, 8° 03' 06" W will get you pretty near the correct Ballyduff! more


About The Festival

Since 1981, West Waterford Drama Festival is held in Ballyduff during March. Over three decades of dramatic excitement, community endeavour, investment in friendship and sheer good fun. All driven by an ethos of volunteerism, community and good humour. more

Supported by Waterford City &
County Council's Arts Festivals Grants