JOE O'BYRNE WEEK
Joe O'Byrne is an actor and playwright who may be from Bolton but it's Salford that's burning his soul. He works here, his plays are premiered here and his inspiration comes direct from the banks of the Irwell. He even has a weekly show on Salford City Radio.
This week sees the release of Joe's latest film, Diary Of A Bad Lad, and the long awaited run of his play, The Bench, at Salford Arts Theatre…
Set around a bench in a local park, residents of the fictional Paradise Heights estate meet their failings, future and fate. It's the third story coming out of Paradise Heights, a fictional estate, based, Joe says on "an amalgamation of places where I've lived and that have influenced me – Salford, Bolton and bits of Manchester - they're estates where you get your blood and thunder stories."
The Bench certainly has `blood and thunder'. Over a twelve month period the play centres around certain residents of Paradise Heights who find themselves at fate points in their lives… a thief, a fake medium, a homeless man, an artist, a widow, a dealer, a loan shark, an angel and a ghost. All of them, at some point during the year, sit on the bench – and one them will die on it.
Hard hitting and hard core real, The Bench has had rave reviews and features a cast including Stella Grundy (Nico Icon), Clyve Bonelle (Lookin' For Lucky, Shameless), Phoebe Marie Jones (Twelfth Night, Accidental Death of an Anarchist), Ian Curley (Lookin' For Lucky, Coronation Street), Ste Myott (Life On Mars, The Laramie Project) and Aaron Rochford (Rank, Broken Britain).
The Bench is well recommended…
By Joe O'Byrne
Salford Arts Theatre, Kemsing Walk, off Liverpool St, Salford M5 4BS
30th June – 3rd July 7:30pm
(includes strong language)
Bookings: 0161 925 0111
DIARY OF A BAD LAD (18)
Frustrated film maker, Barry Lick (Jonathan Williams), sets out to make a sensationalist crime documentary on the cheap about the charmingly psychopathic Tommy Morghen (Joe O'Byrne), a local businessman involved in property rackets, prostitution, pornography and drug trafficking. But Tommy is more cunning and ruthless than any of the film makers can begin to imagine and mercilessly exploits them for his own ends…
Already gathering a cult following, top reviews and world wide interest from distributors, Diary Of A Bad Lad looks like being the realistic ghost in the machine of Brit gangsta films from Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels onwards.
"There is nothing quite like it out there" says Joe "But I warn you it is a very strong film, hard edged and very real. That said, there are some hilarious scenes throughout, it's a roller coaster ride and I promise you it's a film you will never forget."
There's going to be a premiere screening, Q&A, and party for Diary Of A Bad Lad, at the stunning Plaza Cinema on Mersey Way in Stockport on Tuesday 29th June. Tickets £5 0161 477 7779
Diary Of A Bad Lad (18) is released on DVD this week and is available from HMV, ASDA and all major retailers and online stores.
For a full article on his work, written by Joe O'Byrne, see Issue 2 of Salford Media Scene - click here
See Joe's e-book with a full history of productions - click here