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THE CALLBACK QUEEN


A sparkling romantic comedy feature film, which premiered at the 25th Galway Film Fleadh, going on to screen at the British and Irish Film Season, Luxembourg, Irish Film Festa Rome and a US theatrical run at George R. R. Martin's Jean Cocteau Cinema.

Kate Loughlin (Amy-Joyce Hastings) is an Irish actress trying to make her mark in the London film world. She's a pretty redhead with a good head on her shoulders
... The two prongs of the movie's satirical pitchfork are moviemaking and Irish-English friction, and the latter provides some of the film's funniest moments... Hastings is smart and appealing and there's plenty of sharpness and wit on display.

Jonathan Richards, The New Mexican
 
A romantic comedy about moviemakers and aspiring actors that pokes fun at the whole casting carousel... Very enjoyable with lots of laughs.

George R. R. Martin, Game of Thrones Creator
 
Genuinely funny. Genuinely romantic.
Gar O'Brien, Galway Film Fleadh ('Fleadh Picks')


ICEBERG - RIGHT AHEAD!

Ovation Theatre at Gatehouse, London

March - April 2012

Photography by Mitzi de Margary

 
The world premiere of a new 3 Act play commemorating the 100 year Anniversary of the Sinking of RMS Titanic.


Director John Plews allows his gifted ensemble the time to invest intimacy into their characters... Amy Joyce Hastings is an assured, tricksy servant, while Jamie Partridge sparkles as a diamond-hungry womaniser... it’s a tribute at London’s highest theatre above sea level that you need to look out for. 
Jonathan Watson, The Stage

The play is simple and clever, built around the everyday interactions of a group of crew and a competing set of First Class passengers on the top deck. ...Funny? Very. There are many interesting scenes exploring sexual politics - men constantly using, or crossing the line with women.  The cast is split between those that shine and those feeling their way. Matthew Walker is electric in every scene as Fred Fleet, the look-out who spotted the Iceberg Right Ahead! too late. Amy Joyce Hastings is playfully knowing as thieving maid, Violet Jessop. .. Iceberg Right Ahead! is an absorbing two hours of drama...a play that entertains, informs and intrigues. The ending is very poignant. 
Monkey Matters Theatre Reviews


A work of the imagination that adds fictional invention ... rip-roaring farce as well as a tale of thievery and female exploitation.
When you meet their meths-drinking quartermaster and see the rich that they are exploiting, Fleet's exploitation of gullible First Class cabin maid Violet (Amy Joyce Hastings) is seen to be no worse than theirs. The Titanic tragedy is a microcosm of class distinction and at times this script offers a moral message as clear cut as Oscar Wilde in his social satires and, like him, wraps much of it in humour... After the interval, the situation and the play become more serious as the characters take to the boats and the tragedy plays out...John Plews's production manages the change of mood without flattening the strong character playing. And its very simple staging has a powerful effect...the hardworking cast do sterling work... Burgess and Plews, who first devised it, have peopled their play with characters whose parallel personal stories hold the interest irrespective of being on the Titanic, though the audience can hardly dismiss it. When the supposedly unsinkable ship hits the iceberg, the seriousness behind the humour becomes more poignant.
  Howard Loxton, British Theatre Guide

After the interval, when the survivors take the lifeboats, things come together nicely and by the time we get to the enquiry into the disaster it is very moving indeed. Things are helped by some fine performances...all the cast are good, and director John Plews has worked wonders with limited resources. At the end the characters reveal what happened afterwards in real life and the result is a voyage well worth taking.   Timothy Ramsden, Reviews Gate

Neatly evocative ... a melodramatic semi-comedy, embroidering real characters... Stewardess Violet Jessop pilfers silverware and trinkets (theft onboard is supported by divers' trophies, though not incriminating the real Jessop)... soberly fascinating, not unenjoyable though.
Libby Purves, The Times

Some truly magnificent moments...fascinating and poignant... very effective...Credit definitely has to be given to the cast of nine who not only gave wonderful performances but were also responsible for all set changes...This piece is certainly an example of ensemble acting at its best and to call this cast hardworking is an understatement...with scenes in the lifeboats being a glorious example of how brilliant fringe theatre really can be...the sheer intimacy achieved here ...is beyond anything you could experience in commercial West End theatre and something truly magical. ...goes from strength to strength. ... bringing the production to a perfect end...as perfect an end that a play about the greatest maritime tragedy of all time can have.
 David Coverdale, Bargain Theatre

All the crowd-pleasing ingredients are there - writer Chris Burgess wisely homes in on a microcosm of social types from the crew and passengers. All existed, none are inventions, but what is fiction is the first act. Fleet (Matthew Walker) is a Scouse chancer stringing along a devoted first-class stewardess Violet Jessop (Amy Joyce Hastings) who nips around nicking valuables from the toffs at Fleet's bidding. She gets inadvertently "murdered" by Reg who doesn't know his own strength - or stupidity - and bunged in a lifeboat only to recover later...  A night to remember.  Michael Stewart, Morning Star

There’s a danger of all of us being a bit Titanicked out right now as we hit 100 years since the big ship hit the big iceberg. It would be a shame if an overdose meant you didn’t go and see Iceberg Right Ahead... there is far more historical accuracy here than elsewhere. The characters aren’t dreamed up, they were real people on board the RMS Titanic back in 1912. There is some artistic licence, a storyline of the posh and the poor confusing themselves over love and wealth and all the things that divide them, which builds nicely... Given we all know what happens in the end – the boat sinks – there is a curiously chilling, prickles-on-the-neck ending.
 Richard Osley, Camden New Journal

Competant preformances. Amy Joyce Hastings' Violet was lively as the thieving servant in thrall to Fleet who managed to survive three nautical accidents....Iceberg Right Ahead! came alive at the end when the characters spoke in the first person to explain what happened to them following the sinking.  
What's On the Fringe

John Plews and his Ovation theatre company show considerable chutzpah in launching this new play by Chris Burgess following the real-life experiences of 11 passengers on the ship's ill-fated maiden voyage...Burgess focuses, rightly, on a series of short scenes taking place around the ship...The second act, showing the passengers' desperate evacuation, is particularly effective: two lifeboats face the audience, enabling the actors to observe the sinking ship as if off-stage...and the script offers some nice touches.  
Laura Barnett, Time Out

Clever writing brings new insight to the Titanic story. Chris Burgess's script succeeds mainly by exploring real-life characters and highlighting the class and gender differences during the period. It is an involving story, directed by John Plews, and the performances are faultless
 Aline Waites, Ham & High

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DANCER

Gold Award, Austrian Golden Diana Festival 2010
Best Film, Guernsey Lily Film Festival 2010
Best British Film, BIAFF 2011
Best Film, AIFVF 2010
Bronze Award, CIAFF 2010
Special Prize, Estonia Tallinn
Official Selection Portobello Film Festival 2010
London Filmmakers Convention 2010
In the wake of a tragic accident, Jack struggles with the guilt of what he has done. As it begins to consume him, he finds himself drawn towards the family of the victim. Dancer is a tale of redemption, of good people doing bad things and, ultimately, the price they have to pay.

Hastings really sells her character Anna's fixation on her marriage particularly through her excellent non-verbal reactions when she realises he is not confessing to some sexual fling but something worse. Dancer is an engrossing, moving, character-led drama. It is a complex piece of work which grows richer with every viewing.  American Motion Picture Society 2010
 
This film demonstrates how a relatively simple story-line can be delivered with power and emotion. This is achieved through high quality writing, thoughtful direction and excellent acting. The film is well acted throughout with each character being played with a refreshing restraint.  Best British Film, BIAFF 2011, Paul Kittel, Ron Davis & Ron Prosser

This simple idea develops into a very mature film and utterly compelling watch. The excellent construction and terrific acting deliver a real punch and satisfying, if charged, experience.

This tragic story is superbly executed, with excellent acting by the talented cast, all of whom are totally convincing in their roles.
 
A first class film which gripped me from beginning to end. The casting was perfection, the acting superb and the script so well written that it flowed beautifully.

As an ensemble acting piece 'Dancer' was excellent. All the performances had a strong natural feel to them, which really pushed this film above the other contenders and the cast deserves praise for this.

Gillian Tidd, Peter Rouillard FACI, David McGuigan & Norman Speirs FACI
Best Film, Guernsey Lily Film Festival 2010

 
A cast of excellent actors delivering a moving story about the aftermath of a hit and run fatality.  Guernsey Press, 21st July 2010
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ORANGE FLOWER WATER

The first ever European production of Pulitzer Prize nominee Craig Wright’s (Six Feet Under, Lost, Brothers and Sisters, Dirty Sexy Money) dark & humorous relationship drama examining the devastating and often hilarious confrontations when the demons of extra marital sexual attraction occur.

The acting is sensitive and apt...Hastings brings a likeable humanity and strength to the spurned Miss Perfect...including a lengthy, sad yet funny sex scene...An enjoyable, insightful production of a taut and tender play. The Metro

 
...real people grappling with their own weaknesses and moral confusions. Here Steve Gunn (David) and Amy Hastings (Cathy) inhabit their roles with conviction, making it easy for the audience to connect with their dilemmas.  Gerry Colgan, The Irish Times
Smock Alley Theatre
The New Theatre
St John's Listowel
The Mill Theatre
Tech Amergin
April 2006 - Jan 2008
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THE RAINSTORM

Axis Arts Centre
Dublin Fringe Festival 2006
Premiere of the theatrical debut of award winning poet Noel Duffy, set in New Hampshire and tracing the fallout amongst friends & family after the death of a girl by heroin overdose.

A mesmeric, atmospheric work...Amy Hastings (Lori) and Elaine Reddy (Mrs. Sutton) conjured up magnificently captivating performances...Director Jessica Curtis has assembled a stellar creative team and elicits tender and affecting performances from the cast.  Irish Theatre Magazine, September 2006 Issue

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NO EXIT 

Andrews Lane Studio
May - June 2005

The existentialist classic by Jean-Paul Sartre about 2 women and a man trapped in Hell together.

It works best as a showcase for their talents...three very different parts and all of them excellent! ...Interesting and it stayed with me... there were laughs - you feel very good about life when you leave it.
The View, RTE1, 24
th May 2005
 
Amy Hastings as Estelle is very successful.
Alan O'Riordan, The Examiner, 24th May 2005

Sartre's polemic is leavened by Ashmawy's edgy performance and Hastings' portrayal of airy desperation.

Declan Burke, Sunday Times Culture Magazine, 22nd May 2005
 
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 OLEANNA

Cork, Dublin
March - April 2005

The classic, controversial play by David Mamet of a power struggle between a student and her university professor.

This is full of tension and fascinating character revelation...Amy Hastings is a marvelous Carol, a complex creation whose cause comes first, mercilessly turning the knife.  Mamet's coruscating play is in good hands here.  Gerry Colgan, The Irish Times, 7th April 2005

Oleanna packs a powerful punch...Amy Hastings is very good as the student, whose vulnerability draws out the professor, but whose agenda strangles him...both actors are understated and their performances have a cinematic intensity.
Liam Heylin, Cork Echo, 10th March 2005

The two actors make a determined stab at getting to the heart of their parts. Amy Hastings successfully negotiates the transition from a nervous, insecure student to a confident, articulate young woman.  Sunday Tribune, 13th March 2005

A two-hander which confronts American campus political correctness straight on, it stars beautiful Amy Hastings...This play already opened to rapturous reviews in Cork, the Irish capital of all things cultural.
Sunday Independent, 3rd April 2005
Interview plus photo to promote the Dublin opening
 

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CHRISTIAN O'REILLY COMEDIES

Irish Tour, January - February 2005

A double-bill of two satirical, physical comedies by Christian O'Reilly, presented by Tyger Theatre Company, Galway.

To have faith restored in contemporary theatre is a wonderful way to leave a play...as the curtain falls the superb directing and energetic acting all linger for a long time afterwards….done with style, wit, panache and balance...Jessica Curtis, Deborah Wiseman, Amy Hastings and Sean O’Meallaigh make up the ensemble...Combining movement and classical drama, the play also uses the pantomime method to great effect.
Breda Shannon, Irish Examiner, 3rd February 2005
 

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SWIMMING WITH SHARKS

Civic Theatre & Andrews Lane Theatre, Nov - Dec 04

 
An adaptation for stage of the movie which starred Kevin Spacey and Michelle Forbes, Swimming With Sharks centres around a rookie navigating his way through the cut-throat Hollywood industry.


The acting is strong and convincing, and Amy Hastings and Eoghan McLaughlin do well in supporting roles.
Gerry Colgan, The Irish Times, November 2004

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THE NIGHT GARDEN

Northcott Theatre Exeter, March 2002

This was a world premiere of a new play developed by The Royal National Theatre Studio in London and staged in Exeter, set in Dublin during the week of the moon landing in 1969.


Lin Coghlan’s challenging play offers
great scope for its actors...this world premiere is played out with raw and powerful emotion.  Anne Broom, Western Morning News, 20th March 2002
 
The pick of the performances were very good. Amy Hastings as Aisling’s worldly friend Maggie brought to the stage the palpable excitement of her stay in London.  Herald Express, Exeter, 19th March 2002

It is a curiously affecting play which refuses to be dismissed from the memory...Eva Bartley and Amy Hastings tenderly evoke the flowering of forbidden love in the shadow of violence.  Richard Davies, Newton Abbot & Mid Devon Advertiser, 22nd March 2002
 

There are some fine performances...Maggie (Amy Hastings) has already tasted a new life in England and sees it as a new dawn.
Express & Echo, Exeter, 18th March 2002