Competitions & Festivals
Amateur drama in Ireland has two national competition circuits, both of which are All-Island. The two national circuits are the 1-Act Festival Circuit and the Full Length/3-Act Festival Circuit. Each circuit consists of country-wide preliminary festivals.
- The 1-Act Festival Circuit is run jointly by the Drama League of Ireland and the Amateur Drama Council of Ireland - organisers are members of The ADCI/DLI Joint Committee.
- The ADCI organises the 3-Act Festival Circuit.
Competitions & Adjudication
Each preliminary festival has a professional adjudicator who marks each play under the headings; Direction, Acting, Presentation, Overall achievement. The festivals are run on a league basis with marks awarded for 1st, 2nd & 3rd placings and the top groups in each competition qualify for the All-Ireland finals.
There is a Confined & Open competition within each festival. The Open Competition is for groups with significant experience The Confined Competition is for newer groups/ more inexperienced groups/ smaller groups/groups with less resources. A group decides which competition level to enter, however when a group wins the All-Ireland Confined competition they must then move to the Open competition.
One Act Festival Circuit
- Apply for the 1-Act Festival Circuit. Register Online.
- One Act Festival Rules 2019, updated February 2019
Full Length Festival Circuit
- Run by the Amateur Drama Council of Ireland (ADCI)
- Runs from end Feb each year to end March/early April
- 35-38 preliminary festivals
- Applications are accepted following the AGM of the ADCI in September of each year
- Festivals run over 7-10 nights (i.e. 7-10 groups) with a mix of Confined & Open groups
- The top 9 groups on the league tables qualify for the All-Ireland Finals
- The venue for the Confined All-Ireland Finals changes each year as it is hosted by one of the festivals, the Confined Finals commence the weekend after Easter each year.
- The RTE All-Ireland Finals (Open Finals) are held in the Dean Crowe Theatre, Athlone commencing in the first week in May