The Abbey Theatre, Ireland’s national theatre was founded by W.B Yeats and Lady Gregory in 1904 to ‘bring upon the stage the deeper thoughts and emotions of Ireland’. Since it first opened its doors in 1904, the Abbey Theatre has played a vital and often controversial role in the literary, social and cultural life of Ireland.
Over the years, the Abbey Theatre has nurtured and premiered work of major playwrights such as J.M Synge and Sean O’Casey as well as contemporary classics from Brian Friel, Frank Mc Guinness, Thomas Kilroy and Tom Murphy.
The Abbey Theatre came into existence through the crucial support of the benefactor, Annie Horniman in 1904. As we approach our 110th anniversary celebration in 2014 Ireland’s national theatre needs your support.
“We have established The Abbey Theatre’s 110th Anniversary Fund to ensure we continue to fuel the flame our founders lit over a century ago. With your support we can develop playwrights, support Ireland’s theatre artists, engage Irish citizens and present world renowned theatre both nationally and internationally.”
Fiach Mac Conghail, Director Stiúrthóir
Your Role – Securing the Future of Irish Theatre
The Abbey Theatre builds its reputation and extends the life of its work by touring Ireland and performing overseas with world class productions. As Ireland’s national theatre we have a duty to showcase the unique talents of Irish theatre practitioners. In 2011 over 120,000 attended an Abbey production – your support will ensure that ever increasing numbers will have the opportunity to experience what the Abbey has to offer.
The Abbey has the only fulltime Literary Department in Ireland which regularly commissions plays from emerging or established Irish writers. The department continues to receive, assess and respond individually to up to 300 unsolicited scripts per year. Writers of the best of these submissions are considered for invitation to the New Playwrights Programme – your contributions will safeguard this unique resource and ensure that we continue to nurture and unlock the talent of Irish playwrights.
Engage & Learn
Our Engage & Learn Department works with disadvantaged schools and facilitates a wide range of initiatives including workshops, backstage tours and teacher support to create a direct connection between the Abbey and hundreds of students. Crucially they have also helped to break down preconceived ideas about theatre – by supporting us you will help the national theatre to connect with a new generation of younger theatergoers.
Elizabeth Purcell Cribbin
Marie Rogan & Paul Moore