21.6 x 13.8 cm. Volume IV of The Modern Irish Drama series
The Rise of the Realists describes and documents Irish theatrical activity in the years of 1911 through 1915. In 1911, Synge’s last drama, the poetic Deirdre of the Sorrows, was produced, but a new group of realistic writers was emerging who were to shape the drama of the future – among them, St. John Ervine, Lennox Robinson and T. C. Murray.
These years also saw the Abbey Theatre touring three times to America, and being greeted by a riot in New York and by the arrest of the players in Philadelphia. Meanwhile, at home in Ireland, in Westport, George A. Birmingham’s General John Regan was greeted by a riot much more ferocious than that over Synge’s Playboy.
In Cork a new theatre group, the Cork Dramatic Society, produced the first work of Daniel Corkery, Terence MacSwiney, J. Bernard MacCarthy, Robinson, Murray and others. In Dublin, the Theatre of Ireland was superseded by the Irish Theatre in Hardwicke Street, which produced Edward Martyn, Thomas and John MacDonagh, Eimar O’Duffy and many continental plays, thereby paving the way for the Dublin Drama League and ultimately for the lasting work of the Gate Theatre.
For the first time, these neglected years of the modern Irish drama are thoroughly investigated.
21.6 x 13.8 cm 368 pp. 1984 Volume 5 of The Modern Irish Drama, a documentary history
The Art of the Amateur, the fifth volume in the documentary history, The Modern Irish Drama, describes and documents the Irish theatre from 1916-1920, some of the most turbulent years of the emerging nation. Against the background of the Easter Rising in Dublin and its violent aftermath, and of the Great War in Europe, the authors chart how the Irish theatre coped with, mirrored, and curiously, often ignored the trauma of the times.
As the authors of The Art of the Amateur note, the theatre, especially the theatre as entertainment, flourishes in times of public horror. With the deaths of Pearse, MacDonagh, MacSwiney and Sean Connolly, the Abbey player, there was more than enough horror. If few masterpieces immediately emerged, the stage in the period covered in this volume, both public and private, was being set for the emergence of the plays of Sean O’Casey and Denis Johnston.
The Modern Irish Drama, of which The Art of the Amateur is the fifth volume, is a documentary history with transcriptions of contemporary reviews and full cast lists. As The Irish Press commented, ‘Professor Hogan and his distinguished collaborators . . . have produced a rich, fascinating and, to the drama-junkie, indispensable book on a generally neglected period of Irish theatrical history.’More info →