Always the Two of Us – new documentary theatre on growing up in a one-parent family in Ireland

Press Release,

Wednesday 7th  June,

The Ark Children’s Cultural Centre and One Family – Ireland’s national organisation for one-parent families, are delighted to announce the free, rehearsed reading of Always the Two of Us, by Kate Heffernan taking place tomorrow Thursday 8th June at 6pm at The Ark in Temple Bar. The new piece of documentary theatre looks behind the curtains of Irish family life at the real life experiences of adults who grew up in one-parent families during the 1960s, 70s, 80s and 90s; a time when these families often faced shame and scorn.

One Family CEO, Karen Kiernan said, “This is such an important piece of theatre, to be able to tell the often-hidden stories of children (now adults) who grew up on one-parent families in the 1960s, 70s, 80s and 90s. We’ve heard the harrowing stories of the mother and baby homes and the laundries, but Kate has managed to capture the complex range of experiences of children in these homes, the love, the laughter, the shade and the light that comes through. The piece was commissioned to celebrate our 50th anniversary and we want to say a huge thanks to Kate and The Ark for the tremendous amount of work that went into this piece.”

Aideen Howard, Director of the Ark said, “The Ark makes art for by, about and with children. While most of our programme is created for children we also commission work for a grown up audience about the experience of children and childhood. We were delighted to commission playwright Kate Heffernan to create The Ark’s first work of documentary theatre which will be presented as a reading directed by Maisie Lee and read by an outstanding cast. It was a privilege to work together with One Family whose championing of the rights of children. parents and diverse families is an inspiration to us.”

Always the Two of Us was commissioned by The Ark and One Family, this new documentary theatre script has emerged from conversations with men and women, of varying ages, and from both urban and rural backgrounds. In this rehearsed reading directed by Maisie Lee, actors Catherine Byrne, Lewis Harris, Genevieve Hulme Beaman, Lauren Larkin and John Olohan will read multiple roles to share their stories and experiences.



For Editors:

The Ark is a dedicated cultural centre for children. We create opportunities for children, along with their families and friends or with their school, to discover and love art. Through our work with leading Irish and international artists children can enjoy performances in our unique child-sized theatre, view engaging exhibitions or participate in creative workshops.

One Family was founded in 1972 as Cherish and is Ireland’s national organisation for one-parent families and people sharing parenting or separating, offering support, information and services to all members of all one-parent families, to those sharing parenting, to those experiencing an unplanned pregnancy and to professionals working with one-parent families. Children are at the centre of One Family’s work and the organisation helps all the adults in their lives, including mums, dads, grandparents, step-parents, new partners and other siblings, offering a holistic model of specialist family support services.

These services include the lo-call askonefamily national helpline on 0818 66 22 12, counselling, and provision of training courses for parents and for professionals. For further information, visit The askonefamily helpline can be contacted on 0818 66 22 12 or 01-6629212.

For further information on Always the Two of Us click here

Available for Interview

Karen Kiernan, CEO | t: 086 850 9191

Further Information/Scheduling

Noel Sweeney, Communications and Events Manager | t: 085 7241294