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John Millington Synge

The Playboy of the Western World

Comedy in three acts

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Edmund John Millington Synge (1871 –1909) was an Irish playwright, poet, prose writer, travel writer and collector of folklore. He was, together with William Butler Yeats, a key figure in the Irish Literary Revival and was one of the cofounders of the Abbey Theatre. Although he came from an Anglo-Irish background, Synge's writings are mainly concerned with the world of the Roman Catholic peasants of rural Ireland. He lived a bohemian life and spent some time in Paris. In 1896, in a Parisian attic, he was met by an Irish poet and playwright, a 20th century literary giant Yeats, who immediately spotted a great potential, wasting his talent by odd literary jobs. He talked Synge into returning to Ireland in order to dedicate his talent to themes of Irish life and to the needs of the new Irish theatre movement.

Synge’s literary rise was swift; from 1903, when his first play In the Shadow of the Glen was staged, until his death in 1909 he managed to make a break from complete anonymity into fame, and during this short period of time he wrote six plays. Synge’s plays deal with social and economic straits of simple Irish people. He upgraded naturalistic foundations with fantastic and mythological themes and later even with fairy tale motifs.

The play widely regarded as Synge's masterpiece, The Playboy of the Western World, was first performed in the Abbey on 26 January 1907 and caused riots in Dublin during its opening run. The comedy centers on the story of apparent patricide and attracted a wide hostile reaction from the Irish public. Rejected by nationalists, who believed that the theatre was insufficiently politically active, it was described as »a vile and inhuman story told in the foulest language we have ever listened to from a public platform«. Protests in Dublin were followed by protests at its opening in Philadelphia in the United States in 1911. 
On the west coast of County Mayo Christy Mahon stumbles into a tavern and orders a pint of beer with the tavern-keeper’s daughter Pegeen Mike. Pegeen is waiting for the Pope’s dispensation to marry her cousin. Christy claims that he is on the run because he killed his father by driving a loy into his head. Because of the novelty of Christy’s exploits and the skill with which he tells his own story, he becomes something of a town hero. There is an immediate sparkle between him and Pegeen, so Christy would like to marry her. Eventually Christy’s father, Mahon, who was only wounded, tracks him to the tavern. When the townsfolk realize that Christy’s father is alive, everyone (including Pegeen) shuns him as a liar and a coward. In order to regain Pegeen’s love and the respect of the town, Christy attacks his father a second time.


The publisher acknowledges the financial assistance of
Ireland Literature Exchange (translation fund), Dublin, Ireland.
www.irelandliterature.com
info@irelandliterature.com

Director Janez Pipan
Dramaturg Tatjana Doma
Set Designer Marko Japelj
Costume Designer Leo Kulaš
Composer Miha Petric
Vocal Coaches Miha Petric and Marta Kosturska
Language Consultant Jože Volk
Lighting Designer Andrej Hajdinjak
Assistant Director Jernej Kobal
Assistant Costume Designer Andrej Vrhovnik    

Cast
Christopher Mahon Blaž Setnikar
Old Mahon, his father, a squatter Renato Jenček
Michael James Flaherty (called Michael James), a publican Bojan Umek
Margaret Flaherty (called Pegeen Mike), his daughter Nina Rakovec
Shawn Keogh, her cousin, a young farmer Oskar Kranjc (guest appearance)
Widow Quin, a woman of about thirty Pia Zemljič
Philly Cullen Branko Završan
Jimmy Farrell Vojko Belšak
Sara Tansey Minca Lorenci
Susan Brady Ana Ruter
Honor Blake Tina Gunzek (guest appearance)
A Bellman Mario Šelih
The Villagers David Čeh, Rastko Krošl

Opening 22 February 2013
Performance duration: 2 hours and 35 minutes.One interval.

Gallery The Playboy of the Western World

  • Nina Rakovec

  • Oskar Kranjc, Nina Rakovec

  • Nina Rakovec, Oskar Kranjc

  • Bojan Umek, Nina Rakovec, Branko Završan, Vojko Belšak

  • Blaž Setnikar, Bojan Umek, Nina Rakovec, Branko Završan, Vojko Belšak

  • Blaž Setnikar, Bojan Umek, Nina Rakovec, Branko Završan, Vojko Belšak

  • Blaž Setnikar, Vojko Belšak, Branko Završan, Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek

  • Bojan Umek, Branko Završan, Nina Rakovec, Blaž Setnikar, Vojko Belšak

  • Vojko Belšak, Branko Završan, Nina Rakovec, Oskar Kranjc

  • Vojko Belšak, Branko Završan, Nina Rakovec, Oskar Kranjc

  • Blaž Setnikar, Nina Rakovec, Branko Završan

  • Blaž Setnikar, Nina Rakovec

  • Blaž Setnikar, Nina Rakovec

  • Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar, Pia Zemljič, Nina Rakovec

  • Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar

  • Tina Gunzek, Minca Lorenci, Ana Ruter

  • Minca Lorenci, Ana Ruter, Tina Gunzek

  • Blaž Setnikar, Ana Ruter, Minca Lorenci

  • Blaž Setnikar, Minca Lorenci, Ana Ruter, Tina Gunzek

  • Blaž Setnikar, Tina Gunzek, Pia Zemljič, Minca Lorenci

  • Pia Zemljič, Minca Lorenci, Tina Gunzek, Ana Ruter

  • Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar, Tina Gunzek, Minca Lorenci

  • Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar, Tina Gunzek, Minca Lorenci

  • Minca Lorenci, Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar, Pia Zemljič

  • Minca Lorenci, Ana Ruter, Nina Rakovec

  • Nina Rakovec, Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar, Oskar Kranjc

  • Blaž Setnikar, Oskar Kranjc

  • Oskar Kranjc, Pia Zemljič

  • Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček

  • Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček

  • Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček

  • Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar

  • Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar

  • Pia Zemljič, Blaž Setnikar

  • Vojko Belšak, Branko Završan, David Čeh

  • Branko Završan, Vojko Belšak

  • Branko Završan, Renato Jenček, David Čeh, Vojko Belšak

  • Branko Završan, Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček, Vojko Belšak

  • Branko Završan, Pia Zemljič, David Čeh, Vojko Belšak

  • Branko Završan, Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček, Vojko Belšak, David Čeh

  • Branko Završan, Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček

  • Pia Zemljič, Renato Jenček, David Čeh

  • Renato Jenček, David Čeh

  • M. Lorenci, N. Rakovec, V. Belšak, M. Šelih, R. Krošl, B. Završan, B. Setnikar, D. Čeh, A. Ruter

  • Nina Rakovec, Vojko Belšak, Mario Šelih, Rastko Krošl, Branko Završan

  • B. Setnikar, N. Rakovec, M. Šelih, V. Belšak, M. Lorenci, T. Gunzek, B. Završan, A. Ruter, R. Krošl

  • Tina Gunzek, Branko Završan, Ana Ruter

  • Blaž Setnikar, Tina Gunzek, Branko Završan, Ana Ruter

  • Nina Rakovec, Blaž Setnikar

  • Nina Rakovec, Blaž Setnikar

  • Blaž Setnikar, Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek

  • Bojan Umek, Oskar Kranjc

  • Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek, Oskar Kranjc

  • Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek, Blaž Setnikar

  • Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek, Blaž Setnikar

  • Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek, Blaž Setnikar, Renato Jenček

  • Nina Rakovec, Bojan Umek, Blaž Setnikar, Renato Jenček

  • Nina Rakovec, Blaž Setnikar, Renato Jenček, Bojan Umek

  • Blaž Setnikar, Bojan Umek

  • David Čeh, Rastko Krošl, Oskar Kranjc, Vojko Belšak, Nina RBojan Umek, Branko Završan, Blaž Setnikar

  • Vojko Belšak, Renato Jenček, Branko Završan, Blaž Setnikar

  • Nina Rakovec, Oskar Kranjc, Bojan Umek

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