Glengormley-born playwright Carol Moore has been presented with a Major Individual Award (MIA) for the development of the arts.
She says that she will use her award to produce and premiere her new play “The Experience of Being”.
The play is a response to Carol turning 60 in 2016 and is “a challenge to the ageism that is endemic in society”.
It particularly focuses on the stereotyping of older women and its negative impact, but she says it ultimately offers a message that is “positive and life-affirming”.
The awards, funded through National Lottery, make it possible for these artists to produce a “substantial, ambitious project that will make a significant contribution to the development of their artistic careers”.
Carol’s play “explores the negative stereotyping around ageing and the feeling of dwindling power when the central character Cathy turns 60. She should be celebrating but her birthday dinner rapidly goes downhill”.
Carol said: “I am thrilled to have received this award from the Arts Council which enables me to produce my play ‘The Experience of Being’.
“Like many women she suddenly feels invisible. Well I turned 60 two years ago and suddenly found myself in a category titled ‘old people’.
“Western society and a youth obsessed culture, driven by the cosmetic industry, simply doesn’t respect or value life experience, so women feel a double whammy of ageism and sexism.
“My message is about us all rewriting and redefining who we want to be 60 plus and working with women from the Holywood branch of University of the Third Age, they are definitely proof of the positivity we all need in facing the challenges of the ageing process.
“The ‘Experience of Being’ may be tackling an important issue but it has many laughs along the way that women of all ages will recognise”.
The play has been in development since 2017. It will be produced by An Griánan Theatre, Letterkenny, directed by Patrick J. O’Reilly with a music score by Conor Mitchell.
“The Experience of Being” will premiere in the Grand Opera House’s Baby Grand Studio on May 8 and will run until May 10 2019, before going on tour.