Theater News

Abbie Spallen's Award-Winning Pumpgirl to Run at Irish Rep

The play made its New York City debut in 2007 with Manhattan Theatre Club.

Abbie Spallen's award-winning play Pumpgirl will open at the Irish Repertory Theatre this November.
(© photo provided by Matt Ross PR)

The Irish Repertory Theatre will present a production of Abbie Spallen's Susan Smith Blackburn Prize-winning play Pumpgirl, directed by Nicola Murphy. Performances will run from November 7-December 29 in the W. Scott McLucas Studio Theatre, with an official opening set for November 14.

In a gas station in Northern Ireland, barely north of the border, Pumpgirl gets few customers beyond lecherous men and cruel women who remark on her tomboyish appearance. Otherwise guarded, she has struck up a friendship with "no helmet Hammy" – an amateur stock-car racer who prefers to spend time with his unsavory buddies over his wife and children. As Hammy's wife, Sinead, stays home alone, she simmers with rage over her isolated, disappointing existence. On Hammy's birthday, their lives become perilously intertwined, leaving them face to face with a desperate future.

Originally presented by the Bush Theatre, Pumpgirl premiered in 2006 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and made its New York debut at Manhattan Theatre Club in 2007. It won the 2007 Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, the Stewart Parker Trust Award, and was nominated for the Irish Times Best New Play.

Pumpgirl will feature costume design by Molly Seidel and lighting design by Michael O'Connor. Full casting will be announced at a later date.

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Closed: January 12, 2020