A project of SEANACHAI THEATRE COMPANY
Donate today and help fund Seanachaí Theatre Company’s World Premiere of In Pigeon House, by Honor Molloy!
"Fit up a curtain, we’ll put on a show . . ." – John Molloy.
Donate today to support Seanachaí Theatre Company’s 18th season of performing Irish-written and Irish-themed theatre in Chicago and help fund the World Premiere of In Pigeon House, by Honor Molloy!
Juxtaposed against the contemporary drug-fueled club scene in Dublin, In Pigeon House weaves together vaudeville, music hall, and cinema in this love letter to traveling shows. Moving between time and genres, the itinerant players Basher, Masher, Rasher and Dolly rip up the stage with a furious tornado of language and moving pictures. A startlingly theatrical and darkly comic oeuvre, In Pigeon House at once explodes and upholds the romantic myth of the wandering player.
In Pigeon House takes inspiration from the Irish "fit-up," an indigenous form of Irish traveling road-shows which thrived as a major form of theatre in turn-of-the century Ireland. In the tradition and spirit of the Irish "fit-ups," Seanachaí has packed its figurative tents and will mount the World Premiere of In Pigeon House, opening October 17, 2012 at The Den Theatre in Chicago’s Wicker Park, 1333 North Milwaukee Avenue.
Lasting far longer than similar traditions in America and Europe and long before the days where social media and television became the masses’ media, the Irish fit-up brought art and culture to destitute and war-torn Irish rural communities with few established theatres of their own.
Appearing in town halls, parochial schools, barns, or even, as Molloy describes the play's setting, in "seaside tents on islands off the coasts of time," these traveling Irish theatrical troupes would take to the road and stop anywhere they could play for their dinner, bringing circus, melodrama, tragedy and comedy to anyone willing to chip in for a seat.
With the advent of television, the Irish fit-up died out by the 1960’s, but many fit-up actors went on to become stars of Irish film and television, including playwright Honor Molloy’s father, John Molloy, who left the fit-ups to become the star of Irish television’s first soap opera, Tolka Row.
In Pigeon House draws on playwright Honor Molloy’s family history, which is steeped in the Irish traditions of theatre and storytelling (her grandfather had been a music hall comedian and acclaimed physical clown, her mother also a theatre artist). But Molloy’s "circus monument" to the fit-up, radically re-envisions the road-show, and, in the spirit of Sam Shepard, James Joyce, and Samuel Beckett, imagines the fit-up from the dawn of the tradition and as if it had survived into the modern day, where characters literally jump out of televisions and romp through underground gay clubs in Dublin.
Help Seanachaí meet its goal of raising $7,000.00 to help mount this testament to Irish storytelling today!