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The Gate Theatre, Dublin

Inspiration and Craft


Edited By David Clare, Des Lally and Patrick Lonergan

The Gate Theatre is one of Ireland’s major theatres. It has produced important new plays by such figures as Brian Friel, Conor McPherson, and Denis Johnston – while also premiering significant works by other writers, including unjustly neglected women dramatists such as Mary Manning, Christine Longford, and Maura Laverty. It has made huge contributions to the art of theatre in Ireland, not only in relation to acting (launching the careers of Orson Welles, James Mason, and Michael Gambon) but also in terms of direction and design. And it has made a major contribution to the world’s understanding of Samuel Beckett, Harold Pinter, and others.

Despite these incredible achievements, the theatre has been the subject of very little critical attention to date. This book redresses this problem; it is, in fact, the very first scholarly essay collection devoted entirely to the theatre. It gathers together leading academics and critics who explore the Gate’s achievements in relation to the development of new Irish writing and new Irish theatre practices. The book is written with scholarly rigour but also in accessible language and would therefore be of interest to anyone with a passion for Irish theatre.

CONTENTS: Elaine Sisson: Experiment and the Free State: Mrs Cogley’s Cabaret and the Founding of the Gate Theatre 1924–1930 - Ian R. Walsh: Hilton Edwards as Director: Shade of Modernity - Ruud van den Beuken: «Ancient Ireland comes to Rathmines»: Memory, Identity, and Diversity in Micheál macLíammóir’s Where Stars Walk (1940) - Richard Pine: Micheál macLíammóir: The Erotic-Exotic and the Dublin Gate Theatre - José Lanters: Desperationists and Ineffectuals: Mary Manning’s Gate Plays of the 1930s - Virginie Girel-Pietka: Denis Johnston at the Gate: a Groundbreaking yet Neglected Writer - Ciara O’Dowd: Magic Windows: Ria Mooney at the Gate Theatre - Feargal Whelan: Lord Longford’s Yahoo: An Alternative National Myth from an Alternative National Theatre - Cathy Leeney: Class, Land, and Irishness: Winners and Losers: Christine Longford (1900–1980) - Audrey McNamara: Longford Productions, Bernard Shaw, and the Irish Big House - Des Lally: The Fictionalisation of Hilton Edwards and Micheál macLíammóir in the Novel Stravaganza! (1963), by Paul Smith - Anthony Roche: Brian Friel at the Gate: Lovers in Dublin and New York - Noreen Doody: «Our only thorough playwright»: Oscar Wilde and the Gate Theatre - David Clare: Goldsmith, the Gate, and the «Hibernicising» of Anglo-Irish Plays - Christopher Murray: Staging American Drama at the Gate Theatre, 1928–2016 - Graham Price: «Staging an encounter»: Brian Friel’s Faith Healer, Bracha Ettinger, and the Art-Encounter-Event - Trish McTighe: «Be again, be again»: The Gate’s Beckett Country - Aoife Lynch: The Gate, Endgame, and the Second Law of Thermodynamics - Emma Creedon: Harold Pinter at the Gate Theatre: «A Kind of Homecoming» - Des Lally/David Clare/Ruud van den Beuken: Gate Theatre Chronology (1928–1982): The Edwards-macLíammóir and Longford Directorates - David Clare: Gate Theatre Chronology (1983–2017): The Michael Colgan Directorate and the Appointment of Selina Cartmell.