22 Sep 2020
The west of Ireland’s dramatic landscape is the stage for a new touring production of the work of playwright Lady Gregory, a highlight of the Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture programme.
Between 15 September and 17 October, Ireland’s prestigious theatre company Druid is visiting 14 venues in County Galway to deliver unique outdoor performances of one-act plays by Augusta Lady Gregory.
Born in 1852, Lady Gregory was a talented dramatist and folklorist and a key player in the development of Ireland’s literary culture. She was also a founding member of Dublin’s acclaimed Abbey Theatre.
The DruidGregory tour was launched in the historic setting of Lady Gregory’s Coole Park home, and uses music, dance, poetry and song to pay tribute to her extraordinary spirit and influence.
Tony Award-winner Garry Hynes is directing the DruidGregory company, which includes another Tony Award-winner, Marie Mullen, playing Lady Gregory. The plays being performed are The Rising of the Moon, Hyacinth Halvey, The Gaol Gate, McDonough’s Wife and the revolutionary Cathleen ní Houlihan, which she wrote with Ireland’s great poet, W.B. Yeats.
There will also be performances of Galway writer Tom Murphy’s first play, On the Outside.
Some of Galway’s world-famous, historic sites will provide the backdrop for the performances. Among these is Teach an Phiarsaigh, the cottage belonging to Patrick Pearse who was one of the leaders of Ireland’s 1916 Rising.
The Irish Workhouse Centre at Portumna also hosts a performance, as does the stunning nineteenth-century, Kylemore Abbey, one of Ireland’s fairy-tale destinations.
Located in the heart of Connemara on the Wild Atlantic Way, Kylemore Abbey was originally built by Mitchell Henry as an ancestral castle in 1870. Lady Gregory is known to have holidayed there with Henry and his family.
The fascinating visitor experience at Kylemore reveals the abbey’s history of tragedy, romance, education and spirituality. Outside, the gorgeous grounds include a six-acre Victorian Walled Garden, delightful woodland and lakeshore walks and an enchanting neo-Gothic Church.
The DruidGregory tour is part of the re-imagined Galway 2020 European Capital of Culture programme, which will see an extensive series of theatre, music, sport, poetry, film and visual art events run until March 2021.
Over the next six months it will offer both live and digital components ranging over 28 projects and hundreds of events on the theme of ‘Language, Landscape and Migration’.
Irish Workhouse Centre, County Galway
Patrick Pearse's Cottage, County Galway
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