My husband and I had the great privilege of seeing Brian Friel's The Freedom of the City on this past weekend. It was an outstanding production from a theatre company that seems to specialize in outstanding productions. From O'Neill to Friel to Shaw to delighful musicals like Finian's Rainbow, there is simply nowhere in New York City that comes close to the consistent quality that this company offers. We support this group on an annual basis and will continue to do so. They represent the best.
The Irish Repertory Theatre provides exceptional dramatic, comedic, and musical experiences. The intimate space allows for a wonderful, and very different experience. The theater staff is professional, courteous, and especially accomodating to people with physical disabilities. It is ALWAYS a joy to attend a production there!
My husband and I have been attending the extraordinary productions at the Irish Rep for many years.We have introduced many friends and relatives to this marvelous experience. My husband was using a manual wheelchair for a while, when walking or standing for any length of time was impossible. We were accomodated with compassion, grace and sensitivity. My husband has since lost both his legs and while we have NOT attended shows recently, we were, at our last visit, treated with the same sensitivity.I let a young man in the lobby know that we were there, and he got their folding ramp, came down the street to help me get my husband out of our van, set up the ramp again at the theater door and showed us all the way to our seats. Two front row seats were removed to accomodate my husband's motorized wheelchair.We would attend more regularly if my husband's hearing and vision losses were not so bad as they are. We have UPGRADED our membership donations as a result.
We have been going to shows at the Irish Rep for 8-9 years. Probably seen at least 25-30 shows. ONLY ONE of those was a show we didn't thoroughly enjoy, and they were responsive to our criticism. Compare this to the recent offerings on Broadway, and you'll see why we love it.
We used to go to one or two performances every year at the Irish Rep and enjoyed them immensely, but since I became a wheelchair user, it has become too frustrating to continue. Their front door is inaccessible, they do not keep a ramp out, there is no easy way to contact them about putting it out even when they are called in advance about doing so, and the door saddle is a huge impediment. Wheelchair users sit right where actors jump on and off the stage and it is uncomfortable. Attempts to get the Irish Rep to do things differently have fallen on deaf ears so we no longer go and I do not want to donate anymore to an inaccessible theater when there are others that I could donate to.
I still remember the JOY and visual beauty of one of the first IRC productions "GRANDCHILD OF KINGS" I certainly wished them well then but never dreamed that almost 20 years later they would be able to maintain that JOY and visual originality and beauty. Be able to establish a true neighborhood theatre community of such high quality. As a professional actor I am always impressed by the consistently high artistic standards. As an audience member I am impressed and comforted by the acknowedgement of the importance of the Theatre Company to the neighborhood. The welcome from neighborhood restaurants and other establishments is a real perk.One thing that really sets the IRC apart form other NYC companies is the extraordinary imaginative use of a very small awkward space.It is thrilling to see how they have solved the "problem" uniquely to such a wide variety of plays and styles.
I have enjoyed the Irish Repertory Theatre for many, many years. My first experience was "Grandchild of Kings" by Sean O'Casey. I have not lived in New York for several years now, but, I do try to see one of their productions every time I am in town. I introduced my husband to the Irish Rep and he enjoys seeing their shows as much as I do. As others have stated, there are no bad seats and definitely no bad performances.
Don't know if there's much to tell. I am the son of a Kerry woman who had approached you with one of my plays, but was given no response. I have published one play which is presently being vended on BN.com, Amazon.com etc (:Carla and the Wolves), as well as two novels and several short stories. I have several "Irish" plays "Molly on the Shore", "Rory's Ghost" (Irish-American), "Ruskin: a Tragic Laughter", "The Burning Question..of the Diary of Lord Byron" (English)Anyway, much success with the Irish Theater. John C. Maxfield