Tuesday, October 8, 2013

New Tom Murphy Play and Mark O'Rowe's Adaptations of Shakespeare Make Up New Druid Line-Up

Details yet to surface on the new Tom Murphy play Brigit.

Exciting news from Druid Theatre Company after announcing their next line-up of plays.

It begins with a Christmas outing of Dion Boucicault's The Coleen Bawn. Directed by Garry Hynes, this production features live music and a cast including Marie Mullen, John Olahan and Maelíosa Stafford. Historically, Boucicault is a commercial success, and for those of you who read my feature on fundraiser plays vs. landmark plays, you might guess my thoughts on this play choice.

At the forefront of plays to anticipate next year is the world premiere of a new play by Tom Murphy: Brigit. We will be waiting eagerly for details on this play. Tom Murphy was a sort of writer-in-residence with Druid back in the 1980s, and gave them first grabs at Conversations on a Homecoming and Bailegangaire. Following last year's fantastic Druid/Murphy cycle, are we entering a new period of partnership between the two?

Update (09//10/2013): Irish Times article confirms that the new play is a prequel to Bailegangaire. 

"Druid/Shakespeare" might have been a stretch for the title of the company's next ensemble-based cycle of plays. The Irish Shakespeare Project, due to premiere in the Spring 2015, is a co-commission with the Lincoln Center Festival in New York, and consists of the Henriad Cycle's Richard II, Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2, and Henry V adapted by Mark O'Rowe. It will be interesting to see how O'Rowe deals with Shakespeare, and how it's produced by a company with little production history of Shakespeare (Much Ado About Nothing in 1981 and As You Like It in 1999).

What does everybody else think of these developments?

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