Belfast Girls Begins Previews May 11 at Irish Repertory Theatre | Playbill

Off-Broadway News Belfast Girls Begins Previews May 11 at Irish Repertory Theatre

Jaki McCarrick's play follows five women sailing from Ireland to Australia in 1850 in a search for new lives.

Irish Repertory Theatre's New York premiere of Belfast Girls by Jaki McCarrick begins previews May 11 on the Francis J. Greenburger Mainstage. The play officially opens Off-Broadway May 19. The limited engagement will run through June 26.

Labhaoise Magee (Pumpgirl) stars as Ellen Clarke alongside Aida Leventaki (Power Book III: Raising Kanan) as Molly Durcan, Mary Mallen (Manchester by the Sea) as Hannah Gibney, Caroline Strange (London Assurance) as Judith Noone, and Sarah Street (Afterwards) as Sarah Jane Wylie.

Aida Leventak, Labhaoise Magee, Mary Mallen, Caroline Strange, and Sarah Street

Belfast Girls follows five young women beginning new journeys as they sail from Belfast, Ireland, to Sydney, Australia in 1850. But, they soon realize they cannot escape the lives they want to leave behind.

The play imagines the lives of women who participated in the British empire's real-life program called the Female Orphan Emigration Scheme. The program sent "morally pure" girls to Australia to address the crisis of young women left destitute by the Great Famine in Ireland and the shortage of women and labor in Australia.

Nicola Murphy (A Girl is a Half-formed Thing) directs the premiere. The production also includes set design by Chika Shimizu (The Great Wave), costume design by China Lee (Autumn Royal), lighting design by Michael O’Connor (A Girl is a Half-formed Thing), and sound design by Caroline Eng (The October Storm). Avery Trunko (This Space Between Us) serves as production stage manager with Mary Garrigan (Marie Antoinette) as assistant stage manager.

Developed at the National Theatre Studio in London in 2012, productions have previously been mounted in Chicago, Portland, and Pittsburgh.



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