The Off-Broadway company at 132 West 22nd Street is reaching out to new plays and emerging playwrights in the series. As part of its mission statement, The Irish Repertory Theatre "encourages the development of new works focusing on the Irish and Irish American experience, as well as a range of other cultures."
Defender of the Faith "is a story of tragic loyalty, mistrust, betrayal, and violence among men in a Republican family on a South Armagh farm in 1986," according to Irish Rep. "An IRA visitor from Belfast, a possible informer, a young man's grief over his dead brother and a strong-willed patriarch intersect in this dark, astute, and brutally honest debut play."
The reading cast includes Colby Chambers, Luke Kirby, David Lansbury, Michael O'Keefe and David Rasche.
Stuart Carolan's first play was Defender of the Faith. It was produced at the Peacock Theatre in Dublin in 2004. He was co-winner of the 2005 George Devine Award for most promising playwright. Carolan's new play, Empress of India, will be produced via a joint Galway Arts Festival/Druid Theatre venture, under the direction of Garry Hynes. It play Galway in September and the Dublin Theatre Festival in October.
Kara Manning, Irish Rep literary manager, hopes that the reading series will "give playwrights, both emerging and more established, the invaluable opportunity to develop their new work in a supportive, safe environment and will also introduce some Irish playwrights, especially those who might not yet have the New York recognition they merit, to an American audience." The reading is open to the public but reservations are required. Call (212) 727-2737 for reservations.
For more information, visit www.irishrep.org.