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sarah o'toole

A former member of Galway Youth Theatre and a graduate of the Gaiety School of Acting. She worked in theatre and film in Ireland before going on to train as a director on Middlesex University’s International MA in Theatre Directing course where she specialised in Shakespeare, Comedy, Michael Chekhov and Balinese Theatre. As part of her studies she spent time training at the Russian Academy of Theatre Arts in Moscow and ISI in Denpasar, Bali. She then worked extensively as an actor and director in Glasgow as setting up her own theatre company and Improv Troupe, Razed Curtain. 

She teaches beginner and specialised drama classes for adults with Galway Actors Workshop, lectures in drama and playwrighting at NUI  and directs productions for her own company Anam Theatre, which have most recently included her own adaptation of Eugene Onegin, Brian Friel’s The Yalta Game, Patrick Marber’s Closer and the highly entertaining interactive Literary Restaurant for Cúirt Poetry Festival and Galway Theatre Festival. 

She is currently a participant on Druid's FUEL Mentorship programme.

Recent acting credits include: Lucifer in Magma Film’s Jack Taylor: The Magdalene Martyrs, Isabella in Theatrecorp’s production of Measure for Measure, Mary in Low Level Panic and Kate in Thereisbear!’s production of Joyriders.

Playwrighting credits include: Onegin (Anam), The Heroism Hotline (Galway Actors Workshop, with Donnacha Bushe), Granuaile (Arts in Action, with Caroline Lynch), Maud and the Pikeman (Arts in Action, with Caroline Lynch), Outpost (Anam) and The Snow Queen (Galway Actors Workshop)

Sarah is teaching Acting 101, The Next Stage: Voice, Text & Scene Study, The Creative Mindset and The Next Stage: Improvisation & Comedy this term.


James Riordan

James is an actor, choreographer and art director. Besides having a BA (hons) in Drama from Queens' University in Belfast, he has trained in physical theatre at the APT in Berlin and at LISPA in London. He has performed with the English National Opera and the Spiegeltent in London and is a member of the internationally acclaimed alt-drag group The LipSinkers. Locally, he has been working with An Taibhdhearc, Tuismitheoiri an nGael and Telegael.

He has given workshops with the Artful Badger and Clipperton Project in London and taught theatre to children and adults in Ireland, England, Germany and Japan.

He has worked as Art Director with Ishka Films on the music videos Cold Hand, Floating and This Dream Song for My Fellow Sponges, production manager on the JPCoss fashion video, and co-directed projects with Mia for Macnas and Drop Everything.

James is directing our Advanced Performance group this term.


aoife heery

Aoife Heery is an alumnus of Galway Youth Theatre followed by graduating from The Music and Drama Conservatory of DIT with a BA in Music and Performance. She was one of the first students on Queens University's post-graduate course in Children’s and Experiential Theatre as well as getting her MA in Drama Teaching from the University of Western Sydney. She has attended masterclasses with artists such as Michael Keegan-Dolan, Jeremy Irons, London Actors Studio and Focus Theatre Stanislavski Studio.

Aoife has worked in TIE in Germany, and Blue Mango Children’s Theatre Company in Barcelona along with freelance drama facilitation in The Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre in Sydney and school projects in Germany and Ireland with her company AH productions.

Her TV and Film Credits include: Marta for an Aldi Commercials, Barcelona; Prime Time Special, RTE; Ceart Agus Coir; O’SheaTG4. 

Theatre Credits include: A One Woman One Act Play, Daniel and Shattering Glass, Smashing Times Company; A Wing and a Prayer, Spontaneous Theatre Company; Pride, Via Negativa Theatre Project, Ireland & Slovenia; Fire and air dancer,  Flock Dance Company  dir. Carol Langstaff, Galway Black Box and touring Vermont USA.

Aoife has found many parallels between yoga and the arts and graduated as a Hatha Yoga teacher while travelling in India. She now moves freely between the performing and healing arts as an artistic director, performer and teacher through her company Shakti Performing Arts.

Aoife will be teaching Yoga for Actors this term.

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JOhn Rogers

John Rogers is a theatremaker from Leitrim, now based in Galway. He has worked with Moonfish, Mephisto, Waterdonkey, Dick Walsh and Theatrecorp amongst other companies and artists. His one man shows, including Decision Problem [Good Time for Questions] and the 24-hour ARTIST SCIENTIST PRIEST, have run at the Galway Theatre Festival and the Dublin Fringe Festival.

A graduate of the MA in Theatre and Drama Studies at NUIG, John has facilitated workshops, taught and instructed for Galway Actors Workshop, NUIG Dramsoc, Stage School Ireland, Colombo University of Visual & Performing Arts, Sri Lanka and National University of Ireland Galway. He was a co- founder of Playspace Galway and Playspace Sligo. John’s work is founded on the importance of presence in performance and often highlights and questions the use of digital technology in theatre. John also presents a weekly internet radio show from Galway.

John will be teaching Acting 101 this term.