PORTLAND, ORE.: In its sixth year of offering plays by contemporary Irish playwrights to Portland audiences, Corrib Theatre has announced a three-show season for 2018-19. The season’s productions will be mounted at New Expressive Works.
“These three plays explore the realities, complexities, and challenges of life in the 21st century,” said Gemma Whelan, Corrib’s founding artistic director, in a statement. “They celebrate the vast diversity that is the new face of Ireland, revel in the differences, and face the underbelly and lack of comprehension that still exists—the clinging to tradition that persists despite enormous progress. In pitting outmoded concepts of the past against the culturally transformed landscape we now inhabit, our season casts a light on life in the U.S. today and in our own city of Portland.”
The season begins with Hurl by Charlie O’Neill, directed by Tracy Cameron Francis (Oct. 5-28). The play traces immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers from Sierra Leone, Nigeria, Cuba, Bosnia, Vietnam, Argentina, and inner-city Dublin, who compete in the very traditional and ancient Irish sport of hurling.
Next is Four Last Things by Lisa Tierney-Keogh, directed by Gemma Whelan (Feb. 1–24, 2019), which limns the complicated inner life of a young woman who’s dropped out of college and is now stuck on her family’s farm with an inarticulate father and a sympathetic dog.
The season concludes with How to Keep an Alien by Sonya Kelly, directed by Whelan (April 12–May 5, 2019). Irish Sonya and Australian Kate meet and fall in love, while working on a Russian play with English accents in an Irish castle. Together, they embark on a global odyssey to prove that they have a right to live together in Ireland.
Corrib Theatre’s mission is to engage, inspire, entertain, and challenge audiences with theatrical productions filtered through the Irish experience, and with a focus on contemporary and lesser-known voices.