Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

My choice for placing a new Abbey Theatre

Same site on Abbey Street
36
14%
GPO, O'Connell Street
60
23%
Carlton Cinema, O'Connell Street
94
36%
George's Dock, Docklands
16
6%
Site of Hawkins House
46
18%
Other
8
3%
 
Total votes : 260

Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby GregF » Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:01 am

Will they ever leave well alone.....The GPO is grand as the General Post Office as it graces O'Connell St.. So let's hope it stays that way and will be not gutted again for this ludicrous idea.

Kinda like putting an opera house in the Four Courts, a circus in the Custom's House or the Dail in Kilmainham Gaol, (probably not a bad idea, ie the TD's)


There are plenty of vacant sites around the city for an ultra modern new Abbey Theatre.....(to show some of those dreary "national" plays with the stereotypical stage Oirishness and how "tick" we really are).

Maybe Irish architects and planners just aren't up to the job of designing a brand new national theatre!

This is like when idiots in the 60's and 70's moved to as what they saw Georgian premises of prestige in well to do locations of the city only for them to gut the fine old buildings converting them to offices. Today, the idiots in this case think that by moving to the GPO, the fine exterior of the building as well as the history of 1916 will add some prestige to the new Abbey.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby reddy » Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:27 am

David Norris says..."First of all it is owned by the State and due shortly to be vacated as a postal facility."

Is that true? Are there plans underway to vacate the building - have to say I think it'd be a real shame for this to happen - why not look at ways of reinforcing its function as a post office and perhaps provide other public services in vacant parts of the building.

Not the place for the Abbey.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby dermot_trellis » Thu Oct 15, 2009 12:04 pm

If they're hell bent on shutting it down as a postal facility then I wouldn't be wholly against the theatre idea, as long as it was combined with other uses so it was functional throughout daytime hours also - local history centre \ museum or something? I shudder to think what else they might do with the GPO if it's not going to be a post office. Wasn't there some proposal recently to put retail units in there? What happened with the IFSC site that they were proposing for the Abbey a while back?
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby lauder » Thu Oct 15, 2009 3:07 pm

The most obvious solution would be to use the Carlton Cinema Building. It would draw people further up O'Connell Street and enhance the dour Upper O'Connell St area.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby ChrisNugent » Thu Oct 15, 2009 4:47 pm

Surely only the facade of the GPO is Georgian as anything beyond that was destroyed in 1916. Does anyone know what the office space is like on the inside? That said, when/if they do relocate they Abbey I hope they actually replace it with a venue that is designed with consideration to the needs of a modern theatre rather than cram it into something which is unsuitable. The present Abbey, as i understand it, is a joke with little to no wings, flys and poor access and many of the venues popping up around they country seem to be designed by people with very little understanding of the theatre.

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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby fergalr » Thu Oct 15, 2009 6:16 pm

lauder wrote:The most obvious solution would be to use the Carlton Cinema Building. It would draw people further up O'Connell Street and enhance the dour Upper O'Connell St area.


Nothing will enhance Upper O'Connell Street. Maybe another cinema. People go to the cinema.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby Global Citizen » Thu Oct 15, 2009 10:13 pm

fergalr wrote:Nothing will enhance Upper O'Connell Street. Maybe another cinema. People go to the cinema.


Without going too far off topic, I sense a twang of inverted snobbery creeping through some of the posts above. The suggestion that people don't go to theatre because cinema is more popular doesn't merit a response.

Others have suggested that those who do attend The Abbey are "senior generations of middle class lefties" and "greying sweet suckers". Apart from a few grey hairs at the age of 36, I cannot identify with any of those descriptions
As for the person who said The Abbey only shows "dreary national plays with stereotypical oirishness and how 'tick' we really are", all I can say is, he hasn't been there for a long time.

I won't deny the fact that there are many problems with The Abbey. It's current home being paramount amongst them.

But reading some of the posts above it appears that no matter what building the theatre is housed in, it will only be a waste of time anyway.
Because nobody under the age of 60 goes there by all accounts.

Fuck it then. Lets just offer the GPO to its neighbour Dr. Quirkey.
He can turn it into a bowling alley. And like the cinema, more people would go there.

Irish culture 2009.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby gunter » Thu Oct 15, 2009 11:54 pm

I see the senator is finding a synergy in the proposed move of the Abbey to the GPO in the ''relationship between the Rising and the literary renaissance''. . . . using the quote from Yeats:
[INDENT]''Did that play of mine send out
certain men that the English shot''[/INDENT]


In the circumstances, turning the GPO (where the English first started shooting at certain men who were not queuing for stamps) into a theatre could be considered ironic.

hmmm . . . . . ironic, iconic and ionic
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby Global Citizen » Fri Oct 16, 2009 2:12 am

gunter wrote:I see the senator is finding a synergy in the proposed move of the Abbey to the GPO in the ''relationship between the Rising and the literary renaissance''. . . . using the quote from Yeats:
[INDENT]''Did that play of mine send out
certain men that the English shot''[/INDENT]


In the circumstances, turning the GPO (where the English first started shooting at certain men who were not queuing for stamps) into a theatre could be considered ironic.

hmmm . . . . . ironic, iconic and ionic


Fifth column ?

Corinthian perhaps ?
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby GregF » Fri Oct 16, 2009 1:13 pm

"As for the person who said The Abbey only shows "dreary national plays with stereotypical oirishness and how 'tick' we really are", all I can say is, he hasn't been there for a long time."

"Because nobody under the age of 60 goes there by all accounts."


Yep indeed, too bad the Irish public don't hear much about of what is going on at the Abbey, just like that other great instituton of the arts, the RHK. How is the Irish public ever going to have a general appreciaton of arts and culture when it only caters for the very small few.


"Fuck it then. Lets just offer the GPO to its neighbour Dr. Quirkey.
He can turn it into a bowling alley. And like the cinema, more people would go there."


Nope, it is fine as it is, the General Post Office.


"Irish culture 2009."

Indeed!





http://www.abbeytheatre.ie/


BTW...The New Electric Ballroom portrays a gombeen Ireland with the usual - spinster sisters etc.... Rosaleen Lenehan has made a career outta playing such stereotypes of Irish women.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby Denton » Fri Oct 16, 2009 5:54 pm

Why does it have to be the Abbey that develope's the office's at the back?

Isn't only the facade of the GPO used as a post office?



What is the purpose of the oversized amount of office's behind the facade?


With the Arnots Development hopping to add to Prince's Street and make it a used throughfare and store front area.


All development in O'Connel Street is welcome. The North West end is always going to be a dark blot, but with Arnot's going ahead, extra development could be a good thing.


O'Connell Street was re-paved with an aim of making it the main street of the city.

Throughout it's history O'Connell Street has been rebuilt and developed with that in mind but instead the city centre is still developing in a more ad-hoc basis South of the River, but still close to O'Connell Street.


With all that has been done to that historic street, more money, more development can't hurt. It can't be left to waste.


Lower Abbey Street is a desolate place at night, and it's a shame.

Middle Abbey street, has some resturaunts but for the most part it's "travel row", nothing but travel agents, an ironic sign of how no one want's to spend to much time in some parts of North inner city Dublin.


I use the GPO as a meeting place all the time. I then go off to Cineworld on Parnell Street. A wasted development with only one good use.


The whole of North Inner-city Dublin has failed developments.

Not far away is Smithfield.


Investment and more development, and public buildings are the best way to draw more people to North Inner-city Dublin.


Development shouldn't be restricted to the Northside either.

All along the cities main throughfare of Grafton street to O'Connell street is the potential for urban renewal and mixed use between retail/services and social structures and pubs.



Luas expansion could help this, but the red line didn't help Abbey street....:rolleyes:
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby lostexpectation » Fri Oct 16, 2009 6:55 pm

do some people not want it to become a 1916 mecca?
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Fri Oct 16, 2009 9:13 pm

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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby alonso » Sat Oct 17, 2009 7:23 pm

gunter wrote:I can see the logistical logic of sticking the Abbey in the GPO, . . . . giving people the opportunity to attend the theatre and cash one's pension cheque in the same building, you have to say they have thought this through.



Gunter's been making archiseek famous again...

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/weekend/2009/1017/1224256878304.html
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby GregF » Sun Oct 18, 2009 11:35 am

“I can see the logistical logic of sticking the Abbey in the GPO . . . giving people the opportunity to attend the theatre and cash one’s pension cheque in the same building,” writes one glib contributor."

Some fodder for a playwrite ham.


Come to think of it, that would be kinda strange ....a play about the 1916 Rising at the GPO shown at the Abbey Theatre in the GPO.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby GrahamH » Sun Oct 18, 2009 8:03 pm

Ah the glib remarks are always the most pluckable aren't they ;)

Could we have a poll on this Paul? A yes/no option wouldn't be particularly insightful, but if scenarios such as staying put, George's Dock, GPO or Hawkins were proferred, we might stimulate a wider debate on this. I think it is sorely needed, as the public, like ministers, will blindly follow the 'obvious' option. The GPO should not be a foregone conclusion.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Sun Oct 18, 2009 8:44 pm

GregF wrote:Come to think of it, that would be kinda strange ....a play about the 1916 Rising at the GPO shown at the Abbey Theatre in the GPO.


I think there first play should be about that and commerce...
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby gunter » Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:43 pm

GrahamH wrote:Ah the glib remarks are always the most pluckable aren't they ;)

. . . . if scenarios such as staying put, George's Dock, GPO or Hawkins were proferred, we might stimulate a wider debate on this.


I suppose I've got to eat this humble pie, do I?

Ok, I shouldn't have been glib, . . . moving the Abbey to the GPO is a serious idea and we need more people like David Norris to care enough about the city and it's significant institutions to take the time to push new ideas into the public arena.

I can understand how people could see this proposal as a match made in heaven, a great building looking for a new use to maintain it's significance into the future (in an era when a post office has become a hatch in the back of a Spar) and a great institution (cough) looking to finally get itself a fitting building, but it would be a move that gives us less than we have at the moment. We start out with two city icons and we end up with one city icon that doesn't know which it is!

Assuming that the Abbey has to move, and you hear different views on that, there are actually a huge number of options for where it could move to, with more appearing every day. Graham's idea of moving it to the site of Hawkin's House is a great one, but it probably lacks the 'revenue neutral' attribute that everything needs at the moment.

In the light of the current proposal to redevelop the Liberty Hall site, another idea would be to propose a land swap. The fact is that, unless we're creative about it, we'll never get rid of a tall building from the Liberty Hall site, so we're either stuck with the 1960s Liberty Hall, which gains heritage value with every passing year, or we allow it's replacement by something that, for a time, will be equally shiny and new, only bigger and bulkier inevitably.

Image
Google view of the Abbey St. / Eden Quay block with the Abbey Theatre at the top left and Liberty Hall at the bottom right.

I personally wouldn't have the same reservations about a tall structure (a new Liberty Hall) on the Abbey Theatre site, that I have about constructing another, taller, structure on the current Liberty Hall site, and the latter, if a bit of road surface was taken in, would be a potentially magnificent site for a new Abbey Theatre.

Could you sell the idea to SIPTU? . . . . they'd be reluctant for sure, but after two or three planning refusals they might sit down with you around the table.

I think the Abbey / GPO issue shows up the need for an 'Ideas Dept.' in DCC. We shouldn't have to rely on David Norris, or Archiseek, to come up with ideas and then wait years for the necessary heads to be knocked together, the City Council should want to do this itself.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Mon Oct 19, 2009 12:12 am

Its funny I was thinking about this exact same land swap today except that liberty hall took both sites... and either reduced height to 4+2 or covered the whole thing in grass!;)
I mean it's not like liberty hall was ever going to get slimmer in both directions

I have my own theory on the spar atm post office combination...
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:06 am

renzoo mini scaled down?
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:46 am

I don't know about you but there is an opportunity to them to move home?
I don't think I would have an issue with given them a few lanes of the street?

RGB
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby Global Citizen » Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:23 am

gunter wrote:........but it would be a move that gives us less than we have at the moment. We start out with two city icons and we end up with one city icon that doesn't know which it is!


Good point: We'd end up with a post office with its own theatre, or a theatre with its own post office.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby Global Citizen » Mon Oct 19, 2009 8:29 am

missarchi wrote:renzoo mini scaled down?


I don't understand this at all. Whats the point of building a new (national) theatre from scratch in the back yard of the GPO where it can't be seen ?
Its as though you are trying to hide it.
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Re: Abbey Theatre to be located in the GPO

Postby missarchi » Mon Oct 19, 2009 11:49 am

I just know any proposals are going to be substandard...
So it should be hidden in the first box or second one.

why not add a themed bar to the mix... j/k

I'm not suggesting any of the below but I have never seen paintball or airsoft laser tag in dublin central. I'm wondering if they would offer roof top tours? The natural green roofs to the north of the site where not designed by architects!
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Wherefore arte thou Abbey Theatre?

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Oct 19, 2009 2:42 pm

Poll added...
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