Shakespeare 400 Ireland Symposium, MU, 22 October 2016

This very exciting symposium is taking place in Maynooth University on 22 October 2016 and the full schedule is now available.

Shakespeare 400 Ireland Symposium

Shakespeare Lives Across the Island: Conversations and Celebrations

22 October 2016, Iontas Seminar Room, North Campus, Maynooth University


10.15 || Welcome

10.30 || Keynote:

‘“They are rising, they are rising”: Shakespeare and 1916’

Willy Maley, Professor of Renaissance Studies, University of Glasgow

Chair: Colin Graham, Professor and Head of English, Maynooth University

11.15 || Coffee

11.30 || Visit to Maynooth University Library Special Collections to see 1685 Folio

12.15 || Paper Session I:

‘“Drink! Feck! Girls!” – DruidShakespeare and the Retrieval of Shakespearean Memories in Ireland’, Patrick Lonergan, Professor of Drama and Theatre, NUI Galway

Chair: Ema Vyroubalova, Assistant Professor, School of English, Trinity College Dublin

1.15 || Lunch (sandwiches and tea/coffee provided)

2.00 || Paper Session II:

‘The Hero and the Whipping Boy: Irish Shakespeares and Spensers’

Jane Grogan, Associate Professor of Renaissance Literature, University College Dublin

‘“Counted in the song”: The Taming of the Shrew and 1916 in the Irish Feminist Imagination’, Emer McHugh, IRC Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholar, NUI Galway

Chair: Stephen O’Neill, Department of English, Maynooth University

3.45 || Refreshments

4.00 || Keynote:

‘Shakespeare, Film, Northern Ireland’

Mark Burnett, Professor of Renaissance Studies, Queen’s University Belfast

Chair: Maria Pramaggiore, Professor and Head of Media Studies, Maynooth University

5.00 || Open Discussion


This event is kindly supported by Maynooth University’s Commemorations Committee; The British Council; Maynooth University Conference and Workshop Fund; Maynooth University Department of English. For event information contact: Attendance is free.




Theatre: Lear



Following a hugely successful run in New York earlier this year, John Scott brings dance legend Valda Setterfield and his Lear project back to Ireland for shows in Cork and Dublin.
Setterfield, who has worked with Woody Allen, Caryl Churchill, Richard Foreman, Brian De Palma, Ivo van Hove and Marie Rambert, plays King Lear, giving a profoundly moving performance that explores the unravelling of a universe, parental love, fear of death, personal transformation and enlightenment. The inimitable Setterfield is noted for her work with David Gordon Pick Up Company and as a soloist for Merce Cunningham. She has also performed in films by Woody Allen.

Toppling the hierarchy, Goneral, Regan and Cordelia are portrayed by three men: Ireland’s Mufatau Yusuf, recently graduated from SEAD,  Ryan O’Neill and France’s Kevin Coquelard.

Design by Eric Wurtz
Soundscape by Tom Lane
Opening Music by James Everest

A streamlined version of Shakespeare’s play, it shakes us up, lets us see the play anew – Joan Acocella, The New Yorker

A timely and tender exploration of aging, loss and regret that gets to the very heart of who we areIrish Daily Mail

Lear was originally commissioned by Kilkenny Arts Festival, Ireland, and performed at New York Live Arts as part of #iamireland, supported by Culture Ireland


Irish Modern Dance Theatre

Choreography and Direction:

John Scott


Cork Date: Friday 14 October at 8pm. Tickets €8-12 book online or call (021) 4507487

More details:

Dublin Dates: Saturday 22 October 2016 at 7.30pm, Sunday 23 October at 2pm, Monday 24 October 2016 at Noon and 7.30pm Tickets €10-16 euro can be booked online.

More details:






Report: 6th Annual Tudor and Stuart Ireland Interdisciplinary Conference

6th Annual Tudor and Stuart Ireland Interdisciplinary Conference

Aug 19-20, 2016


Evan Bourke and Bronagh McShane on the registration desk

The 6th Annual Tudor and Stuart Ireland Conference took place at NUI Galway on Friday 19 and Saturday 20 August 2016. This year’s conference welcomed over 80 delegates attending over both days of the conference from institutions across Ireland and beyond. The programme featured more than 40 research papers on a variety of topics, from religious history, women’s history and Shakespeare, to early modern Irish law, book history and the Irish abroad. The programme also featured two special panel sessions; ‘Shakespeare and Ireland’ and a session in honour of Professor Steven Ellis. Plenary addresses were delivered by Professor Mary O’Dowd (QUB) and Professor Andrew Hadfield (University of Sussex).


The first day of the conference opened with a welcome address by Professor Daniel Carey, director of the Moore Institute at NUI Galway.  This was followed by a dynamic programme of sessions featuring new research presented in thematic 1.5 hour sessions.  The topic of papers were representative of the broad spectrum of specialities that dominate the study of early modern Ireland.  These included papers on collegiate churches and Galway’s early modern Augustinian foundations, political pamphlets, the episcopate of the Established Church in the wake of the Reformation, early modern Irish women, kerns and politico-military history, as well as themes such as contagion and capitalism in early modern Ireland.  After lunch, a special panel session on ‘Shakespeare and Ireland’ featured stimulating presentations by Dr Naomi McAreavey (UCD), who discussed performances of Shakespeare on the seventeenth century Irish stage, and Emer McHugh (NUIG), who gave an insightful overview of Shakespeare performances in Ireland in 2016. Afternoon panel sessions included papers such as Dr David Heffernan (Ind.) ‘The “composition for cess” controversy and the position of the Old English in mid- Elizabethan Ireland, c.1575-84’, Ms Alix Chartrand (Cambridge) ‘Tories and thugs: the impact of seventeenth-century struggles against Irish banditry on India’ and Dr Felicity Maxwell (NUIG) ‘Dorothy Moore’s Irish connections: Protestant networking and social critique in the 1640s’.

The first day of the conference concluded with Professor Mary O’Dowd’s plenary address on age as a useful category of analysis, followed by a conference dinner at Kirby’s Restaurant, formerly the site of a seventeenth-century Dominican convent, which provided delegates with opportunities to network.


Prof. Mary O’Dowd (QUB) being introduced by Prof. Marian Lyons (Maynooth University

The second day of the conference commenced with a special panel session in honour of Professor Steven Ellis, internationally recognised historian of the Tudor period, who recently retired from the Discipline of History at NUI Galway. Presentations were delivered by Kieran Hoare (NUIG), Dr Gerald Power (Metropolitan University, Prague) and Dr Ruth A. Canning (UCC). This special panel session was followed by seven thematic sessions which featured twenty-one research which included papers such as Dr Brian MacCuarta (Archivum Romanum Societatis Iesu) ‘An Irish layman in Rome in the mid-1590s’, Professor Caroline Newcombe (Southwestern University, United States) ‘How early Irish marital property law influenced the end of Brehon Law’, Dr John Bergin (QUB) ‘The career of Dennis Molony (1650-1726), an Irish Catholic lawyer and agent in London’, Dr Jason McElligott (Marsh’s Library) ‘Early modern female book owners: the evidence from Ireland’s first public library’, Dr Willy Maley (Glasgow) ‘Double Dutch: the Boate brothers and Ireland’, and Dr John Cunningham (Exeter/TCD) ‘The apothecary in early modern Ireland’. Proceedings concluded with a plenary address delivered by Professor Andrew Hadfield on ‘Edmund Spencer the Less among the Jacobites’.

Conference proceedings have been disseminated in the form of podcasts, which can be downloaded, shared, and played for free through iTunes and SoundCloud. Podcasts from Tudor & Stuart Ireland conferences also form an important corpus of early modern material presented through, a major digital humanities project based out of the School of History, University College Dublin.  Links to podcasts from this and other Tudor & Stuart Ireland conferences, as well as past programmes and paper abstracts, are available visiting the conference series website,


The Sixth Annual Tudor & Stuart Ireland Interdisciplinary Conference was generously supported by the President’s Award for Research Excellence (awarded to Prof. Steven Ellis), NUI Galway, the School of Humanities, NUI Galway, the Moore Institute, NUI Galway, the Discipline of History, NUI Galway and the Society for Renaissance Studies.

The Sixth Annual Tudor and Stuart Ireland Conference was organised by Evan Bourke (NUIG), Dr Jeffrey Cox (UCD), Carla Lessing (NUIG) and Dr Bronagh McShane (NUIG).

Conference Twitter account: @TudorStuartIre

Conference Hashtag: #TSINUIG16

For more information about the Tudor & Stuart Conference series, or to contact the advisory committee visit our website at


Report by Dr Bronagh McShane (NUIG) and Dr Jeffrey Cox (UCD)

Reading: Prospero’s Prison

In this session with filmmaker and dramaturge Tom Magill (left) chaired by Prof. Mark Thornton Burnett of Queen’s University Belfast (right), we will be discussing his film-in-progress, an adaptation of Shakespeare’s The Tempest entitled Prospero’s Prison. This is a modern adaptation based around themes of revenge and reconciliation and shows how Shakespeare’s play is of relevance to a post-conflict Northern Ireland. There will be an opportunity to read aloud an outline of the plot as a group, and volunteers will be very welcome. During and after the group reading, we’ll be discussing how the adaptation can be taken forward: again, contributions are encouraged and invited!


Place: Performance Space, Linen Hall Library Belfast

Time: 2.00-4.00

Date: 18 October 2016




Public talk for Culture Night: “Shakespeare’s Sources and the Boole Library’s Resources” at UCC Library

For this year’s Culture Night on Friday 16th September, UCC’s School of English and UCC Library’s Special Collections invites you to discover the texts that inspired William Shakespeare’s greatest works.

In a unique event, Dr Edel Semple (Lecturer in Shakespeare Studies) will deliver a public lecture on “Shakespeare’s Sources and the Boole Library’s Resources” at 6pm in the Boole Library, Research Skills Room (level Q-1). This illustrated talk will explore Shakespeare’s use of his sources and offer an insight into book history using the Library’s rare, early printed books. A range of texts will be examined from the history book the Chronicles of England, Scotland, and Ireland by Holinshed that Shakespeare consulted for Richard II and Henry V, to The Discovery of Witchcraft which influenced Macbeth, to John Lyly’s comedies that inspired Shakespeare’s romantic comedies.

The talk will consider the materiality of these sixteenth and seventeenth century books, from their printing and binding to their handwritten notes, doodles, and bookworm holes that can reveal much about Shakespeare’s world, the history of the volumes, and their use by readers since the Elizabethan era. Visitors will also have the opportunity to tour the “Cervantes ‘Prince of Wits’ (1616-2016): Life, Work Legacy” exhibition on its final night in the Boole Library.

The talk is part of the British Council “Shakespeare Lives” programme that commemorates the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death this year. Further events for Shakespeare 400 are planned to take place in Cork in October and November, and details will appear on this blog in due course.

Stream the Shakespeare’s Globe production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Did you miss the live stream of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed by Emma Rice, last Sunday? You can now watch it on the BBC website from anywhere in the world. It will be available for six months. Let us know what you think!