The story of The Field may be best known for its 1990 film version, which was adapted for the screen by Jim Sheridan. Richard Harris starred.
According to Off-Broadway's Irish Rep, "The Field is a fierce and tender study of the love a man can have for land and the ruthless lengths he will go to in order to obtain the object of his desire. Bull McCabe, a farmer, has leased four acres of poor land from a widow for five years during which time he nurtured it into prime pasture. Now she wants to sell the land to the highest bidder, and Bull, having invested his time and effort, believes that he has rights to the property. When an 'outsider' from England appears on the day of the auction to offer an unusually high price, Bull decides to take justice into his own hands."
The late Keane, who died May 30, 2002, is one of Ireland's foremost dramatists. In The Field, he "takes us on a primal journey exploring powerful themes such as tradition, birthright, and obsession for land that is as potent as it is universal."
Keane's first play Sive won the All-Ireland Drama Festival in 1959 and its impact immediately made Keane's reputation. Subsequent plays include Big Maggie, Sharon's Grave, Many Young Men of Twenty, The Man From Clare, Hut 42, The Year of the Hiker, Moll, The Crazy Wall and The Buds of Ballybunion.
Keane was also a journalist and essayist. In 1967, with "Letters of a Successful T.D.," Keane began a series of epistolary novellas. The other titles include "Letters of an Irish Parish Priest," "Letters of a Love-Hungry Farmer, Letters of a Country Postman, Letters of a Matchmaker" and "Letters of an Irish Minister of State."
The cast of The Field includes Craig Baldwin, Orlagh Cassidy, Malachy Cleary, Paddy Croft, Karen Lynn Gorney, Brian Henderson, Ken Jennings, Laurence Lowry, Marty McGuire, Paul Nugent, John O'Creagh, and Tim Ruddy.
Set design is by Charlie Corcoran, costume design is by Martha Hally, lighting design is by Jason Lyons, sound design by Zachary Williamson.
Performances of The Field will be Wednesday–Saturday at 8 PM. Matinees are Wednesday, Saturday, and Sunday at 3 PM. An additional performance has been added Tuesday May 23 at 8 PM and the Wednesday May 24 performance at 3 PM has been cancelled.
Tickets are $55 and $50 and can be purchased by calling The Irish Repertory Theatre box office at (212) 727-2737. For more information, visit www.irishrep.org.