A Closer Look At This Years Adjudicator

10 October, 2021

Walker Ewart ADA

Walker Ewart is a native of Castledawson, south Derry in N. Ireland and is living currently in Bangor Co. Down.

As an adjudicator, he works mainly throughout Ireland and Scotland, and occasionally in England. He has adjudicated the British One-act Finals three times; the three All-Ireland Finals (Open Full-length in Athlone, Confined Full-length and One-Acts) twice; the Ulster Drama Finals and the Scottish finals once.

Having worked in education for 38 years firstly as a teacher of Modern Languages and then as a member of the Education and Training Inspectorate, he was awarded an O.B.E. for ‘services to education’ in 2012 on his retirement.

His lasting interest in amateur drama began at the age of 14, when he was cast as Sir Oliver Surface in Sheridan’s ‘School for Scandal’ and felt the magic of making an audience laugh. He has been involved with the amateur drama circuit since teacher-training college in 1975 as an actor, director and administrator. He had the honour of being Chairman of the Association of Ulster Drama Festivals (AUDF) representing the interests of N. Ireland amateur drama. He worked closely with his counterparts in the ADCI.

 He has appeared as an actor in the All-Ireland Finals in Athlone in ‘Amadeus’ with Holywood Players, and in ‘A Doll’s House’ with Bangor Drama Club.  He has appeared as both an actor and director in the Ulster Drama Festival on several occasions, most notably with the winners ‘Hay Fever’ and ‘Observe the Sons of Ulster’.

He has been a Bangor Drama Festival tea-maker, secretary and Chairman so understands the efforts made by the huge team of volunteers in any festival.  He has suffered adjudications as an actor and director so understands the sensitivities of groups who have been preparing their work for many months.

He is currently a volunteer French teacher for the University of the Third Age, a voluntary organisation for retired learners.  He is also the Chair of the Panel which adjudicates new Irish play-writing by amateurs organised jointly by the Drama League of Ireland and the Amateur Drama Council of Ireland and sponsored by the Ramor Theatre, Virginia, Cavan.

He is looking forward to the Confined Finals which represents everything which is good about the amateur drama circuit. Each group, on stage and backstage, represents their parish with pride. To have reached the Finals may mean that they have already ‘won’ but he is fully aware of the prize they all seek. May the groups make the adjudicator’s decision as difficult as they always do!