Led by Philippa Donnellan

A CoisCéim BROADREACH project commissioned by Age & Opportunity / Bealtaine in association with the National Concert Hall and Fatima Groups United.


Please note – this project has been postponed. 

If you would like to receive updates, you can join our mailing list HERE or contact Caoimhe at broadreach@coisceim.com.  In the meantime, keep dancing from home with our new, free digital dance class – click HERE for details.


There is a door. It has a handle and a lock. It can be easy or difficult to open. Depending, of course, on which side of the door you are on, who opens it and why.

In this bold and delightfully riotous dance theatre performance, a group of people push open THE DOOR to reveal stories about home, hospitality and belonging – and what they mean as we age. A CoisCéim BROADREACH commission, THE DOOR has been developed over the last year with communities from across Dublin County and Dun Laoghaire. Led by Philippa Donnellan, it features live music by members of NCH Blow the Dust Orchestra and is performed by an irreverent gang of elders with a passion for dancing and a desire to hold on to the keys. Céad míle fáilte! But is it that simple?

Lead photo by Ros Kavanagh.

The Door in 2019

This project began with CREATIVE DANCE WORKSHOPS in Dublin and beyond and culminated with a special TEA DANCE:


From 29 April to 24 May, Philippa Donnellan and Emma O’Kane led a series of taster dance workshops at CoisCéim Studio and also with 6Dun Laoghaire Active Retirement Group, Ozanam House Active Retirement Group, Fatima Family Resource Centre, and Newcastle Active Retirement Group. Informal, energising and fun, these workshops invited participants to take part in easy dance sequences to music of all kinds, exchange stories and ideas around the theme, and discover a few original moves of their own. 

“…. we all enjoyed the Dance Workshops with Philippa….and we had great fun and came out feeling relaxed and happy” – Gabrielle Lowe, DLR Active Retirement Group Coordinator

“I thought I’d only go the once to see…but I’ve loved every minute and came to every class.” – participant

“really enjoyed the process, it was good to push myself” – Fatima Groups United member


On Sunday 26 May at the Pillar Room, Rotunda Hospital, over 100 people came together to share experiences, dance with others and show choreography created during the workshops. This free celebration open to both workshop participants and members of the public. During the event, and following several energetic dances and plenty of cups of tea, some of the participants presented 4-5 choreographies and dramatic scenes that had been created during workshops. These informal showings revealed stories of exclusion, suspicion, sorrow, joyful welcome and unexpected celebration, and were followed by much insightful response by members of the public.

In 2019, THE DOOR was also supported by Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council.


Photos by Rob O’Connor


Photos by Anthony Griffin