Rules/ Capers


Sponsored by FBD

  • To encourage greater participation by clubs in variety-type entertainment, without incurring excessive cost.
  • To develop skills, confidence and teamwork.
  • The competition is designed for those wishing to gain experience in entertainment shows.

Team Size

Teams can consist of between one and 15 members.


  • Counties/regions can enter two teams to the national rounds.
  • Counties/regions that have not entered Capers in the last three years will be allowed to enter a rainbow team, consisting of members from several different clubs within the county/region.
  • Counties/regions eligible to enter a rainbow team can do so for three of four consecutive years.


  • All competitors must be 17 years of age or over and under 35 years of age on September 1st, 2020.
  • A club may not pay a cast member to perform.
  • Previous county winners/representatives are eligible to compete in the following year.
  • Previous national winners are ineligible to compete for two years.


Teams produce a light entertainment variety show. There should be good balance between items musical, choral, dancing, comedy, etc. Adjudicators will be advised not to give credit for extravagance in costume, props and other effects. Each team may have its own producer. S/he need not be affiliated to Macra na Feirme. All team members must be affiliated, including musicians. Only the team/cast members and a maximum of 5 helpers (including the producer, if they are in the wings) will be allowed in the wings before, during and after each performance, with the exception of the Presiding Officer and his/her assistants.

There are no restrictions on the number of helpers who are not in the wings, e.g. light/sound assistants.

Helpers need not be affiliated to Macra na Feirme. Live music, CDs and tapes will be allowed.


  • Standard lighting as at venue – no extra lighting. Standard lighting will consist of four 1,000W lanterns on each side of the stage and one spotlight. Colored lighting (not compulsory) can be used, once available to all teams.
  • There will be a standard backdrop and wings at the venue. Nothing (e.g. posters, props, etc.) can be fixed to the backdrop.
  • Props will be allowed on stage. A prop is an object (e.g. table, chair, etc.) and should be in keeping with the spirit of the competition and be low budget. Props should be free standing and not change the scene of the stage. For example, a real car may be replaced by a cardboard one.
  • Sets will not be allowed on stage. Sets are something that transforms the stage completely (e.g. a backdrop with a street scene painted on it), which sets the scene of the stage.
  • The host county will provide a sound system which will include at least one monitor speaker. A maximum of seven microphones, four of which must be cordless will be provided at the venue. Any musical instruments plugged into the sound system are not counted and are seen as additional to these seven microphones. No other sound equipment or amplifiers will be allowed.
  • Teams are advised to contact the host county prior to the competition to confirm what sound equipment and facilities are being provided.


  • Teams are allowed a minimum of 15 minutes and a maximum of 20 minutes for their performance.
  • Teams are allowed five minutes to prepare the stage, plus two minutes for composure on the stage.
  • After the performance, a team will be allowed two minutes to clear the stage.
  • Each team’s performance will be timed from the start to the end of the show, i.e. including any performance taking place outside of curtain opening. Failure to comply with these time limits will incur a penalty of five marks per minute or part thereof.


There will be three judges who must not communicate with each other. Each judge must, independently, give a clear decision in favour of one team.

Marking System

Content....................................... 10

Variety........................................ 10

Talent.......................................... 10

Entertainment value.................... 30

Production.................................. 25

Utilisation of cast......................... 15



Prizes are awarded to best female performance, best male performance, best act and best producer at the national rounds. The host county is responsible for the individual prizes for this competition.


The aggregate placing system will be used to determine the winner. If there is a tie, then the team with the most ‘firsts’ will be the winner. If there is still a tie, then total marks will determine the winner. If the teams are still tied at this point, the team with the higher score for entertainment value will be deemed the winner.

Closing Date

The closing date for entries to National Office is Wednesday, December 16th, 2020.