Is Musical Drama The Bloody Irish Aiming for America?

News   Is Musical Drama The Bloody Irish Aiming for America?
The new musical drama The Bloody Irish, about the 1916 "Easter Rising" in Ireland, is aiming to have its U.S. premiere in 2016.

It is expected that the U.S. tour will be produced to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the six-day Easter Rising, in which Irish republicans seized locations in Dublin in an effort to end British rule and establish an Irish Republic while Britain was occupied with World War I. The British military quashed the efforts, leading to the execution of many of the uprising's leaders.

Interestingly, the stage production is told from the British point of view.

The production, which was aired on U.S. PBS stations in October, features music by David Downes with re-arrangements of familiar songs including "Monto," "It's a Long Way to Tipperary," "Mo Ghile Mear" and "The Parting Glass."

While an official U.S. tour has not been announced, the New York area PBS station WLIW 21 was offering a package to attend a Broadway performance of the musical at the Neil Simon Theatre in April. The official website for The Bloody Irish states, "The show is set to make its debut on the US stage in 2016." Inquiries to the production team were not immediately answered.

The Neil Simon Theatre is currently home to the limited engagement of The Illusionists, which concludes Jan. 3, 2016. The theatre's next tenant has not been announced.

Michael Barker-Caven directed the stage production that is written by Barry Devlin.

The Bloody Irish was filmed in front of a live audience in Dublin, with a cast that included Malcolm Sinclair as General Maxwell, Lorcan Cranitch as Connolly, Gavin O’Connor as Pearse and Lisa Lambe as Elizabeth.

Here's how it's billed: "General Sir John Grenfell Maxwell – the man who signed the death warrants of the 1916 leaders—narrates this dramatic retelling of the events of Easter Week. Starting out with a belief that the rising is a foul act of treachery, Maxwell has a change of heart, asking in the end whether he has made a grievous mistake in sending Pearse, Connolly and the rest to their death.

"His questioning is driven along by the action that unfolds—a combination of song and dramatic cameos set in the GPO and in the killing fields of the suburbs – as Easter week progresses; action that culminates in the execution of the leaders and in the change of public attitudes to English rule that led to the war of independence and the setting up of the Free State."

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