Blarney is a picturesque village of around 2,500 people in the southwestern part of Ireland. The little town is lovely in its own right, with an interesting agricultural museum and a handful of beautifully kept gardens in the vicinity.
What makes the village a world-renowned attraction, of course, is the imposing Blarney Castle. The estate grounds offer several gardens and wooded walking paths, and plenty of opportunities for photographing the castle architecture, cultivated plants and trees, and waterways.
The top attraction, as everyone can guess, is the fabulous “Stone of Eloquence,” or simply “the Blarney Stone.” For decades, tourists from all over the world have stood in long lines, waiting to kiss the storied rock, in hopes of gaining the “gift of gab,” the blessing of never being at a loss for words.
It turns out that Castle Blarney is even more than its ancient history, green gardens, and legendary artifacts. In fact, it also occasionally serves as a majestic venue for select special events.
This August, Blarney Castle hosts a particularly fanciful theatrical presentation of Alice through the Looking Glass for kids of all ages. Lewis Carroll’s beloved story features memorable characters such as Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum, the Jabberwock, and, of course, Alice. This theatrical version of the novel was written by Michael Whitmore and remains true to the original, preserving all its delightful quirkiness for the audience. Just imagine the Wonderland-style fantasy of Alice, acted out against the backdrop of a towering stone castle set among the rolling green landscape of Ireland – amazing!
The event at Blarney is just one of several stops for the touring show, which is being presented by UK theater company, Quantum Theatre for Science. Established in 1988, the self-funding theater group specializes in producing educational theater aimed at improving young people’s literacy and numeracy skills. During summers, it also runs adaptations of favorite plays and stories for children, including this year’s tour of Alice through the Looking Glass and Shakespeare’s The Tempest.