While I was on vacation over Christmas, I took an opportunity to review all of my notes for the actual events of the Uprising and to organize the events into some preliminary scene summaries. Right now, I have everything set up and organized into six scenes for Act II, but I’m sure that once I continue to dig in and see how the events of Act I influence the events of Act II, there might be a few more scenes.
Speaking of Act I: There’s SO MUCH INFORMATION and I’m not sure how to dig into it and find out what is relevant, what would make good drama, what can be staged, and how it will all work out.
As I was plotting out Act II on vacation, I had a thought for how I want Act I to play out. From my notes:
Scene one: musical scene — may review major events/struggles for Irish independence.
REST OF SCENES
- [Bulmer] Hobson and [Patrick] Pearse at one of the first meetings of the organization they both created (1911?)
- As more meetings are held, followers fall into two camps — “wait” and “take action”
- Closer to 1916, plans are made to take action
- Hobson and Pearse disagree on time to act. Hobson is clearly stalling
- Call to action is made, countermand issued, Hobson is kidnapped
- Act ends with a song in which those who will act psych themselves up for battle
Now, do the actual events play out this conveniently? Probably not. I’m trying to work my way through Charles Townshend’s Easter 1916: The Irish Rebellion, a book that is full of primary documents and wonderful information. My only issue with it, as someone with an already short attention span, is that there is almost TOO much information. It’s all good information, and I’m taking a ton of notes. But between a busy work schedule and lack of focus, it’s hard to get through it all.
Rather than labor over making my way through this thick a book of information, I’ve decided (rightly or wrongly) to switch up my tactics. I’m trying to find some barebones overviews of what went into the planning of the Rebellion, and then I’m going to supplement my research from there.
Basically, that means I’m spending today reading the Wikipedia article of the rebellion to see what sort of plot I can make for the first act, then try to follow the research to flesh out some of the details.
My dream would be to go back to Ireland to explore the different locations where the Rebellion happened, and possibly to be connected to local historians to review and get more information about some of the primary documents and meeting spaces. For now, I have Wikipedia and my public library. They’ve gotten me this far; I’m sure they can carry me the rest of the way.