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The first collection of plays by Marina Carr introduces the work of a major new voice in playwriting. Love in the Dark 'One of the most exciting, new and absolutely original aspects of Carr's writing is the manner in which the sexism of the language and religious imagery is exposed... Marina Carr is a playwright to be watched.' Sunday Tribune The Mai 'The writing is at once gentle and raucous... capable of articulating deep-seated woes and resentments in a manner you rarely find outside Eugene O'Neill.' Observer Portia Coughlan 'A play of precocious maturity and accomplishment.' Irish Times 'Portia Coughlan packs a hell of a punch. It hurts to look at it. But it has to be seen.' Irish Independent By the Bog of Cats... 'A poetic realism steeped in the past... Carr has an extraordinary ability to move between the mythic and the real.' Guardian 'A great play... a great work of poetry... the word should soon carry across both sides of the Atlantic.' Independent
This book locates the theatre of Marina Carr within a female genealogy that revises the patriarchal origins of modern Irish drama. The creative vision of Lady Augusta Gregory underpins the analysis of Carr’s dramatic vision throughout the volume in order to re-situate the woman artist as central to Irish theatre. For Carr, ‘writing is more about the things you cannot understand than the things you can’, and her evocation of ‘pastures of the unknown’ forms the thematic through-line of this work. Lady Gregory’s plays offer an intuitive lineage with Carr which can be identified in their use of language, myth, landscape, women, the transformative power of storytelling and infinite energies of nature and the Otherworld. This book reconnects the severed bridge between Carr and Gregory in order to acknowledge a foundational status for all women in Irish theatre.
"This is the first collection of articles to be published on the theatre of Marina Carr, a major contemporary Irish playwright whose work is highly acclaimed in Ireland and internationally for its poetic energy and its remarkable theatrical imagination." "These essays examine Carr's highly original voice, and place her plays in the context of current theatre in Ireland and abroad. They raise lively debate on contemporary representation of 'Irishness' on the stage, on the current state of Irish theatre, on the impact of female authorship on the canon of Irish theatre, and on Carr's portrayal of characters who are fundamentally at odds with the world around them."--BOOK JACKET.
On Raftery's Hill 'This is a play that howls to be seen; its courage is matched only by its dramatic power.' Sunday Independent Ariel 'An astonishing piece of theatre. Interweaving themes drawn from Irish, Greek and biblical myth, she spins a tale of power that is honest, emotional, dark and true . . . Die to see it.' Irish Examiner Woman and Scarecrow 'Drama doesn't come much richer or stranger than this death-bed lament. Ravishing in its dense, literary language, it is as visceral as it is intellectual. It lingers not only in the ear and brain, but in the imagination and the gut. An extraordinary brew, bittersweet and totally intoxicating.' The Times The Cordelia Dream 'A brave piece and clearly charged with deep feeling. . . This is certainly unsettling territory and Carr boldly goes for it.' Financial Times Marble 'An extraordinary play that lures us in with a promise of the recognisable only to drag us screaming into the soaring, magnificent possibilities of love and the destruction that it wreaks.' Irish Independent
Essays on contemporary Irish theatre
This third richly varied collection of plays by Marina Carr was published to coincide with the Royal Shakespeare Company's premiere of Hecuba at the Swan Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon, in September 2015. Sixteen Possible Glimpses imagines sixteen fleeting moments in Anton Chekhov's short life and work. Phaedra Backwards retells the Phaedra myth to discover what shaped her. The Map of Argentina offers a meditation on love and what happens when it is denied, or pursued and hunted down. Hecuba was written in reaction to the bad press this Trojan queen receives, and reimagines how she may have suffered and reacted. Indigo is a dark and passionate romance amongst fairies, demons, ghouls and every sort of fantastic creature out of folklore and myth.
In A Critical History of Modern Irish Drama 1891-1980 (1984), the late Professor D.E.S. Maxwell states that the drama of J.M. Synge has 'an effect of language [to] disturb the apparent solidity of his stage's material accessories, to fantasticate and mythologise character into action.' In a sense, this is what all great drama does; through the use of the fantastic and the mythic, it disturbs the 'solidity' of the world as we know it. The works presented and discussed in this volume, show how the material of the everyday is transformed by the dreams of theatre makers, as we journey forth into the 21st Century. In writings by Marina Carr, Seamus Heaney, Olwen Fouéré, Terry Eagleton, Paul Murphy, Aoife Monks, Melissa Sihra, Conall Morrison, Mark Phelan, Eamonn Jordan, Brian Singleton, Lynne Parker, Rhona Trench, Stephen Regan, David Johnston and Donal O'Kelly we see examples of creative writing which engage critically with a world that is constantly changing, and examples of critical writing which engage creatively with theatre that is constantly evolving. This book is also a celebration of the vitality, originality and richness of theatre practice and scholarship on the island today. In Olwen Fouéré's 1999 production Angel/Babel, the millennial cyborg-figure says: 'The dreaming body lies at the core of everything and the metaphor of the dark is much richer and stranger than what is being talked about.' Theatre, indeed all art, is impossible without the dreaming body, whether it is the body of the performer, the playwright, the designer, the scholar or the director. Such creative impulses are at the heart of what this book seeks to explore. Theatre practice and scholarship in Ireland, North and South, has never been more vibrant and energised. This collection of writings offers a taste of the dreams and imaginings which have materialised on the island over the last forty years. The sixteenth volume in the Ulster Editions & Monographs Series.

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