From the studio to the stage, students will study the workings and history of Ireland's world-class national theatre while developing their own theatre skills, knowledge, and practice. Students from Villanova will work alongside students from Irish and other universities and be taught by practitioners and professors from the U.S. and Ireland. Student work will culminate in a showing of final work at the Lir, Ireland's National Academy of Dramatic Art and guided by Abbey Theatre professionals.
The Abbey Theatre, the national theatre of Ireland, has long showcased great Irish drama. Emerging out of theatre societies founded by W.B. Yeats, Edward Martyn, Lady Augusta Gregory, John Millington Synge, the Fay brothers, and others, the Abbey Theatre has fostered playwrights and premiered productions by Sean O’Casey, Brian Friel, Frank McGuinness, Sebastian Barry, and Marina Carr, among many others. The Lir is Ireland’s National Academy of Dramatic Art. It is part of Trinity College Dublin and is associated with the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) in London.
The program is a joint enterprise between Villanova University, the Lir, the Abbey Theatre, the National University of Ireland in Galway, and University College, Dublin. It offers a select group of students from Ireland and the United States the opportunity to study with Irish Studies scholars and Irish theatre professionals.