Internationalization of Irish Drama 1975-2005


The Internationalization of Irish Drama, 1975-2005

Funded by: IRCHSS.


Dr. Patrick LonerganProject Leader
Ms. Shelley TroupePostgraduate Researcher


This project is conducted by an inter-institutional Research Team, which is exploring the internationalization of Irish drama since 1975. The Research Team will locate the development of Irish theatrical culture during this period in a comparative international context, with a major focus on Ireland's changing relationships with the wider world.

The research is founded on the conviction that, during the last thirty years, there has been a marked internationalization of Irish drama, with Irish plays, playwrights and theatrical companies establishing newly global reputations. Simultaneously, the increased globalization of Irish society has led to new styles of dramatic writing, performance, and theatrical production. The project aims to explore these developments by investigating the inter-relationship of three features of Irish theatrical production since 1975: the regional, the national, and the international - as follows:

1. The International Within Ireland.

This research explores the history of the Dublin Theatre Festival since 1975, with an emphasis on its production of international drama within Ireland.

2. The Regional and the International

This strand explores the development of Druid Theatre, a regional company that pioneered rural touring within Ireland before achieving international success.

3. Performing the Nation for International Audiences

This strand explores the Abbey Theatre's international tours during the period 1975-2005, with particular focus on its participation, as Ireland's national theatre, in international festivals.

The project is a collaboration between Trinity College, Dublin and National University of Ireland, Galway, with research being conducted in both institutions and online. The research will result in three doctoral theses, one book, an international conference, an online database of Irish theatre productions, and a series of training workshops for doctoral students.