Donegal Town native Seimi Campbell, a well-known figure in the theatre and music scene, shares his perspective on life in Donegal.
Séimí is most well known for his involvement with theatre, both on and off stage. He is a student of Music Education at Trinity College Dublin and the Royal Irish Academy of Music, and is due to finish his degree in less than two months time.
Séimí most recently directed the sell-out run and critically acclaimed ‘Evita’ in the O’Reilly Theatre Dublin, with Trinity Musical Theatre (TMT) in February 2018, which garnered the support of Broadway stars Patti LuPone and Kristin Chenoweth.
Séimí cofounded TMT in 2016, while back at home in Donegal, he was director with Bosco Productions for six years.
He has also directed the Donegal debut of Mairéad Ní Ghráda’s An Triail in the Abbey Arts Centre, Ballyshannon (September 2015, November 2017).
In 2017, Séimí founded Donegal Youth Musical Theatre (DYMT), and directed their inaugural production and North-West premier of Phantom of the Opera in An Grianan Theatre, Letterkenny (August 2017). He is looking forward to directing a contemporary adaptation of Jesus Christ Superstar in An Grianan Theatre with DYMT this August.
He has been awarded with a JCI Top Outstanding Young Person Award (Donegal) in 2017, and was named in the ‘Trinity Twenty’ earlier this year.
In his ‘other life’, Séimí is a proud musician and music educator. He is an accompanist with his parish choir in Killymard each Sunday morning, and was most recently selected to represent Ireland at the EAS Music Education Conference in Latvia later this month.
This is Séimí Campbell’s My Donegal…
What is your favourite place in Donegal and why?
Lough Eske. The best place to clear your head after a busy week in the Big Smoke.
Who is the one person in Donegal that you look up to and why?
What has been Donegal’s proudest moment in recent years?
Sam Maguire coming back to the Diamond in 2012. A night we will always remember.
What has been the biggest compliment you’ve ever received?
What is your favourite Donegal-made product?
Tom’s brown bread, Aroma. Always survives the journey to Dublin in my suitcase each week!
Who is Donegal’s greatest ambassador around the world and why?
Maireád NíMhaonaigh. Also, Noel Cunningham.
Who is Donegal’s most successful businessperson in your opinion?
Deirdre McGlone, Harvey’s Point. A lady who always takes time to speak to one and all, continues to put Donegal on the map through her love of the county and has built up an absolute treasure chest in our back garden!
Who is your favourite Donegal sportsperson of all time?
A toss between Seamie Coleman and Michael Murphy.
What is your favourite Donegal restaurant?
Aroma at the Craft Village, Donegal Town. It is the one place you always leave feeling healthy – even after a slice of lemon cake!
What would your ideal day in Donegal consist of?
What is your favourite Donegal saying or expression?
‘Sure you’re wild good…’
What is the biggest challenge facing the people of Donegal today?
Like all of the country, I think we need to continue to work together to promote positive mental health in Donegal. As Cycle Against Suicide promote, ‘It’s O.K. not to feel O.K., and it’s absolutely O.K. to ask for help’. Let’s keep spreading this message.
What is your favourite Donegal food?
Steak on the stone from the Market House at the Abbey Hotel. Melt in the mouth!
Is there anything that really annoys you about Donegal or its people?
The four hours bus journey home from Dublin every weekend. But, it’s ALWAYS worth it.
Do you have a favourite local band?
Build a new state of the arts theatre in Donegal Town to help put Donegal on the map as a hub of professional theatre. We have the talent. We just need a venue to match it.
What has been the most exciting moment of your career so far?
Is there anything about Donegal that you are very proud of?