Sunday, 14 April 2013

Political Drama, What Drama?

Now you’re an expert on Danish coalition politics to add to your knowledge of how a filibuster works in the Senate - how come you don’t know how Stormont works, who works there and why? 

Political drama on these islands has been in short supply. We tend to concentrate on comedy, satire and just plain poking fun at politicians and the political process. Why have our devolved Parliament and Assemblies not inspired writers and producers to tell us about the drama on the Hill, in the Bay and at Holyrood? Is it because we don’t find our own politics interesting enough or are we too cynical even to watch politicians?

Join the discussion with panel members to include Simon Heath, executive producer of the BBC2 series Party Animals (2007) which looked at young, ambitious people close to political power and starred Andrea Riseborough and Matt Smith. He is currently working on Line of Duty 2, soon to start filming in Northern Ireland.

Lesley Riddoch, broadcaster and commentator, thinks Scotland has gone a bit bonkers over Borgen. Having spent her pre-teens in Belfast she is always happy to come back and she has just started a PhD comparing Norway and Scotland.

Matt Qvortrup lectures in Comparative Politics at Cranfield University and is an expert on referendums; beng from Copenhagen he might be able to tell us if the Danes have gone bonkers over Borgen too. Having worked as a journalist at the Danish Parliament and published an official history of Danish Prime Ministers he can offer an insider’s perspective.

Tim Loane is a screenwriter, playwright and director. He has written award-winning political satires for the stage and his screenwriting includes being creator and lead writer of Channel 4’s Teachers, the political thriller Proof for RTE and the Channel 5 re-boot of Minder.

Neil McKay is the writer of numerous dramas including the BAFTA-awarding winning Mo with Julie Walters and Appropriate Adult and See No Evil: The Moors Murders. He also recently adapted Kate Summerscale’s best-selling crime story The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher for ITV.

The discussion will be chaired by Quintin Oliver, Stratagem, Northern Ireland’s first dedicated public affairs company celebrating 15 years in the lobbying business.

This event will take place at the MAC and is part of the Belfast Film Festival.

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