– I’d like it to be perfect … Beautiful … The statue … Unbeatable … I’d like it to be what I feel … And I don’t know what that is.
Seamus is an odd-job man with ‘a great pair of hands’. He is given ‘a commission’ by the church to carve a statue. His previous work for the church was none too happy. However, he reluctantly accepts the commission and as he works on the statue his obsession with it grows: it comes to involve his family which is on the breadline – his wife, Mommo, and the three grandchildren they’ve inherited.
Bailegangaire occurs thirty years later.
– The countryside produced a few sensations in the last couple of years, but my grand plan: I’ll show them what can happen at the dark of night in a field. I’ll come to grips with my life.
Mommo tells over and over again a story she never finishes. It relates how the town of Bochtán came to be known as Baileganagaire, the town without laughter. Mary, Mommo’s granddaughter, in between ministering to her, wavers between staying and leaving her. Dolly, Mommo’s other granddaughter, counts down the days before her husband, Stephen, returns from England and this time she’s determined to be ready for him.
Sisters though they might be, will Mary and Dolly even begin to understand each other? Is any sense to be made of what Mommo has to say? What will it take to release each of these women from their private hells?
First premièred by Druid in 1985, Bailegangaire is unique in Tom Murphy’s oeuvre for centering exclusively on the lives of women. It throws an unremitting but tender light on a trinity of women’s lives from a dark time.
‘A major play from a major Irish playwright, Bailegangaire is as complex and haunting as one of Yeats’ later poems.… Here is a potent allegory – of the need to exorcise the past and its myths if one is to be happy in the future.’ The Sunday Telegraph
With Bailegangaire, Tom Murphy has written one of the crowning achievements of Irish drama.
|Father Kilgariff||Marty Rea|
|Reverend Mother||Jane Brennan|
|A Young Nun||Rachel O’Byrne|
|Mary||Lily McBride (Galway)|
|Sarah Conway (Dublin)|
|Dolly||Ailbhe Birkett (Galway)|
|Susie Power (Dublin)|
|Tom||Colm Conneely (Galway)|
|Joshua Lyons (Dublin)|
|Set & Costume||Francis O’Connor|
|Lighting Designer||Rick Fisher|
|Sound Designer||Gregory Clarke|
Town Hall Theatre, 9 – 21 September 2014
Tickets:Tue 09 - Fri 12 €22/€18 | Sat 13 €40/€35 | Sun 14 €44/€39 | Tue 16 - Fri 19 €26/€22 | Sat 20 & Sun 21 €44/€39
Clifden Arts Festival
Town Hall, 23 & 24 September 2014
Dublin Theatre Festival
Olympia Theatre, 01 – 05 October 2014
Tickets:Single shows: €15–€35 | Both Shows: €20 –€60