Although Ireland is often associated with shamrocks, whiskey and Guinness, people forget that the Emerald Isle's other great export is literature—which has probably been improved by the whiskey and Guinness. Famous authors, poets and dramatists abound in the lush greenery of Ireland, including Brian Friel, who is often referred to as the Irish Chekhov. Friel was born in Northern Ireland in the 1920s and went to school alongside other famous figures like poet Seamus Heaney and John Hume, a politician noted for his work in the Northern Ireland peace process. Friel's plays are heralded as poignant portrayals of the human experience, and though they are often set in Ireland, their themes are universal.
Dancing at Lughnasa was originally staged in Dublin in 1990 and made its way to Broadway a couple of years later where it won a Tony Award for best play. It will hit Boise on Wednesday, Nov. 16, through Saturday, Nov. 20, when the Boise State Theatre Arts Department presents Dancing at Lughnasa at the Danny Peterson Theater.
The play is set in rural County Donegal in 1936, and the action follows five sisters as they welcome home their brother, Jack, who has been serving as a priest in Africa. All the while, three of the sisters entertain the brief possibilities of summer love.