In this Film Ireland Podcast, Gemma Creagh welcomes 3 filmmakers to talk about their short films screening at this year’s Galway Film Fleadh. Grace Dyas (Director, Waiting Day), Shannon Welby (Writer, Licence for Nil) and Aisling Byrne (Writer/co-director, Misread) join Gemma for this special Fleadh edition of the podcast.

Waiting Day (DIR: Grace Dyas • WRI: Lynn Ruane)

As a single Ma, waiting day is a mixture of difficulty and excitement, but familiar and hopeful. You spend days broke, resourceful and economical with your choices for dinner. ‘Waiting Day’ is the day before you’re paid, the day before you can top up your gas, the day before you feel rich again – just for a moment. As a working-class mother on state support, you are always waiting, and in the skill of waiting, you dismiss the shame, fear, and the fact that you will be one of many single Mas on the post office queue. This is a story of a working-class Ma in her silent struggle and her supportive daughter, who takes on more than just a bigger sister role to her baby sister Millie. Their lives become a habitual pattern, they barely bat an eyelid to the fact that they are pushed beyond reasonable levels of resilience.

Racheal was in her early teens having Nikita with her childhood boyfriend, James who she loves dearly. But recently his addiction costs the family more than they can afford, emotionally and financially, forcing her to kick him out. Now a single mother, every day is a set of difficult decisions for Rachael and her young family. They almost enjoy waiting days as much as it pains them because, much like Christmas Eve, you know tomorrow the suffering of waiting will be relieved. Racheal and Nikita show great humour in how they survive and using techniques like breaking out into random songs is how they transition from the pain to the ‘everyday’.

Irish Talent: New Shorts 7: Fís Éireann/screen Ireland World Premiere Shorts

Sat 15 July | 12:00 | 104’ | Town Hall Theatre


Licence for Nil (DIR: Shane Robinson • WRI: Shannon Welby)

Curtis is hugely proud of his new authoritative role as a TV Licence Inspector. But his world and expectations of the job are turned upside down when he is partnered with a wayward inspector to collect fees on a remote island full of tricksters.

Irish Talent: New Shorts 3: Fiction

Thurs 13 July | 12:00 | 93’ | Town Hall Theatre


Misread (DIR: Aisling Byrne, Sinéad O’Loughlin • WRI: Aisling Byrne)

After prison, Gary is living at his mother’s and struggling to stay on the straight and narrow. Tasked with driving his brother to college every day, he soon realises that he has overlooked the support that was there all along.

Irish Talent: New Shorts 4: Fiction

Fri 14 July | 10:00 | 91’ | Town Hall Theatre


Grace Dyas

My name is Grace Dyas and I’m an artist, activist, writer, director, producer and performer and I live and work between south inner-city Dublin and Inis Oirr, Aran Islands. I’ve made films, plays, live performances and huge projects with people who had never done art before. I’ve made art mostly about all facets of addiction, but also prostitution, sex work, the history of government corruption around social housing, casual sex, the conflict with the English in Ireland, the referendum on abortion and the legacy of Church and State abuse in Ireland, mostly with survivors of Magdalene Laundries.

I make art because I know it changes lives for the better.

Shannon Welby

Shannon is a screenwriter from Donegal who used to bunk off school to go to the cinema. More recently, she moved to remote Tory Island to pursue her screenwriting. There, she developed her own TV series and filmed her second short film which will premiere at the 35th Galway Film Fleadh. This year she reached the top 1% of 4,287 scripts for BBC Writersroom 2023 and was selected for development for RTÉ Storyland 2023. 

Shannon enjoys writing themes of ‘othered’ and segregated individuals, hard-to-face subjects, and using laughter in darkness. Her credits include an upcoming Cartoon Network series and her accolades include selection for Spotlight TV Comedy, Screen Ireland Screen Mentoring, top 26% for BBC Studios Writers’ Academy, X-Pollinator Development Lab, Final 30 for Virgin Media Discovers, and Best Screenplay Award Finalist at Catalyst International Film Festival..

She graduated with a First Class Honours MA in Screenwriting for Film & Television at National Film School IADT and has over five years’ experience in the film and entertainment industry with Disney Ireland, Paramount Pictures France, Paramount Pictures Ireland, Dublin International Film Festival and Eclipse Pictures.

Aisling Byrne

Aisling is a theatre and filmmaker from Co. Kildare and the Artistic Director of award-winning inclusive arts organisation Run of the Mill. She is also the co-founder of documentary theatre collective Talking Shop Ensemble. Her short film script Misread was recently awarded the 2022 Ardán / RTÉ Short Film Commission and will premiere at the 35th Galway Film Fleadh; co- directed by Sinead O’Loughlin. Her narrative short debut Headspace premiered at Cork International Film Festival winning both the Academy Award qualifying Grand Prix Irish Short Award and the candidacy for the European Film Awards 2023. In 2023 she was selected as one of 12 emerging female filmmakers for residential talent lab ‘Creator’ (X Pollinator/ Screen Ireland). In 2023 she collaborated across the All Abilities Casting initiative alongside Ardán, The National Talent Academy and the BAI aimed at levelling the playing field for learning disabled talent in Ireland. She is a regular collaborator with Dublin based production company Arcade Film.

The Galway Film Fleadh takes place 11 – 16 July 2023.

Film Ireland Podcast



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