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Which of Broadway's Irish Playwrights Will Be Joining the 1st Irish Festival?

A writer from the Emerald Isle will lend a new work to the annual celebration of Irish theater.

David Mandelbaum and Shane Baker, stars of the New Yiddish Rep production of Waiting for Godot, joining Origin's 1st Irish Festival this September.
(© Ronald L. Glassman)

Four U.S. premieres and seven world premieres will make up the 7th annual Origin's 1st Irish Festival, running from September 3-28. The event is the world's only theater festival solely dedicated to Irish playwrights and will take place in a variety of New York venues.

The four American productions participating in the festival will include Georgina McKevitt and Jacinta Sheerin's Waiting for IKEA, starring McKevitt and Laoisa Sexton and directed by Alan King (September 17-28 at the Times Square Arts Center); Seamus Scanlon's The McGowan Trilogy, directed by Kira Simring (September 11-October 5 at The Cell); New Yiddish Rep's production of Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot in Yiddish, directed by Moshe Yassur, with an authorized translation by Shane Baker (September 4-21 at the Barrow Street Theatre); and a production from the Irish Repertory Theatre, written by a "highly popular Irish playwright, whose work has often graced the boards on Broadway." The announcement of this final work is pending.

The festival will also feature two productions coming straight from Ireland. Murmur Productions will present the U.S. premiere of Boys and Girls, written by Dylan Coburn, set to run at 59E59 Theaters from September 3-28. West Belfast's Brassneck Theatre will also present the U.S. premiere of Man in the Moon, written by filmmaker Pearse Elliott. The production will star Ciaran Nolan, with direction by Tony Devlin, and will run from September 10-28 at Times Square Arts Center.

The festival's Next Generation series, consisting of small developmental workshop productions, will also premiere six new works. The New York-based Rafter's Road Theatre Co. and LAF Theatre Co. will present Dublin playwright Anto Nolan's Docks, Jocks and Socks, directed by Laurence Lowry, and featuring Anto Nolan. Performances will run from September 10-13 at the Times Square Arts Center. Origin Theatre Co. and The Attic (Dublin) will also present the world premiere of five short plays by five young Irish playwrights, each of whom was given the assignment to write a play on a common topic in three days. The news works will be directed by Henning Hegland and will run from September 22-23 at the Times Square Arts Center.

This year's special events will also include Irish Mammies, a live stand-up comedy show by Irish comedian Colm O'Regan on September 12 and 13, among other offerings.

The Next Generation works, along with the larger Mainstage productions, will vie for jury-voted awards, which will be presented to the outstanding performances and productions in an awards ceremony on Monday, September 29.