Dublin dance, theater scene a hotbed of new work

From Cathy Edwards, Director of Programming:

I was in Dublin last week to see some performances as part of the Dublin Dance Festival, and I saw a few very interesting pieces, some of which were solo dance performances that used heritage Irish dance forms, such as step, as their basic movement motif even though the concept of the dance was very contemporary.

I was especially curious to see the new dance that is happening in Ireland because of my excitement about one of the productions that will be at the Festival this June, "The Pride of Parnell Street", written by Sebastian Barry and produced by Fishamble: the new play company, an Irish production house with a growing reputation. When I saw "The Pride of Parnell Street" at the Dublin Theater Festival this past October, it was evident how much new work in many performance forms is coming out of Ireland. I was especially excited because of the chance to see a new play by one of Ireland's foremost writers. Sebastian is an acclaimed novelist (he was nominated for a Booker Prize for his novel A Long, Long Way, and his new novel, The Secret Scripture, is being released in the U.S. by Viking Penguin this June) and had great success in New York with earlier plays, "The Steward of Christendom" and "Our Lady of Sligo". Most of all, it is always exciting to see a new play by a noted writer. The production was excellent, the acting superb, and the play had a tremendous impact on me-it really conveyed a changing world, the impact of violence, and the powerful connection of love that ties people together at times of turmoil-- it was very powerful theater.

I am really delighted that we will have the play here at the Festival in June-don't miss it!-and I love the fact that we are working with a new play company, and that there is so much new work being created for the stage that speaks with complexity and fresh relevance about the human experience. We are lucky to have both Fishamble and the fantastic writer Sebastian Barry here with us in June!