On Monday, 13 May, our Taoiseach came to see Velvet, by Tom Ratcliffe. We were honoured by his presence and support for the festival.
’16 years and then this happens. The Taoiseach (Prime Minister) books two tickets and joins us at our opening night party in Cafe Rubis. Sadly these things don’t happen in other countries, but they do in ours. He and his partner were so unassuming our foreign guests couldn’t believe it! I understand Culture Minister Josepha Madigan who launched the Festival gave him the programme. In all the negativity that populates debate – these things happen and they are important. Thank you. After 16 years of volunteering- I never thought I would introduce a show by saying “Taoiseach, Ladies and Gentlemen … it has happened and I’m proud of Ireland.’
– Brian Merriman
We have finished our first week, and what a week it’s been! Read all reviews for week one here.
Week two has started, and the first reviews are already coming in!
Read all reviews for Velvet here.
Read all reviews for All I See Is You here.
Read all reviews for Monastic / Like Orpheus here.
Read all reviews for Like Orpheus here.
Read all reviews for Gertrude Stein and a Companion here.
Read all reviews for The Little Pink Book of Masculinity / The Measure of a Man here.
Read all reviews for Bingo here.
Read all reviews for Obligatory Scene here.
The reviews for some of our shows are pouring in, and we couldn’t be happier with them!
You can read all the reviews here:
Read all reviews for Borderline A**hole here.
Read all reviews for Revolting Women – A Rebel Cabaret here.
Read all reviews for I See You, Tom Kennedy here.
Read all reviews for The Baby Monitor here.
Read all reviews for A Southern Fairytale here.
Read all reviews for The Number here.
Read all reviews for the double bill here.
Read all reviews for Party Boy here.
Read all reviews for Schlong Song here.
You can generally buy tickets at the door for Festival performances. However we strongly recommend pre-booking for Friday & Saturday evening shows.
Note the ticket status for the following shows:
Please arrive on time if pre-booked. There are unlikely to be any tickets available at the venue:
The following performances still have some tickets available but are selling well and may sell out. We would suggest arriving early as seating is unallocated. Pre-booking recommended if possible but tickets still available at the venue.
Last updated: 16/5/19 @ 4pm
Mingle with audience, performers and volunteers at our rotating, free, nightly Festival Club. The Festival Club starts around 10pm as our 9pm shows close until late .
For both weeks of the Festival the club nights are:
Tuesday: Street 66, Parliament St
Wednesday: The George, Sth Great George’s St.
Thursday: Pantibar, Capel St.
Friday: Street 66
Saturday: The Teachers’ Club, followed by The George until late!
(Monday is a party to welcome our participants to Dublin)
Free entry to the George if you show your ticket or Festival pass any evening until May 19.
Check out the locations here.
To celebrate the opening of Festival 2019 we have €10 Monday matinees of all our week 1 shows at 2:30pm / 4pm.
Comedy, drama, cabaret, love, scandal and intimate stories await.
Check out our week 1 shows & matinees here.
Can’t see our matinees? Don’t worry – we have more matinees on Saturday.
Our physical box office in Street 66, 33 Parliament Street is now open Mon-Sat April 29 – May 18, 12noon-3pm.
Feel free to drop in a get information on the Festival programme or bookings to or to book tickets by cash or card.
You can also phone the box office at +353 89 219 6898 during box office hours.
Click here for more information.
If you can’t make it to the box office, don’t worry:
Our 2019 Programme has been launched. You can download a printable copy of our brochure here.
You can also view the programme online and buy tickets 24/7 here.
Brochures will be available throughout Dublin city centre and selected other areas from this week onwards.
You will also be able to pick them up from our venues and our up-coming Box Office at Street 66.
Minister Josepha Madigan TD to Launch 16th Annual International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival
‘16th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival Returns’
The 16th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival, Ireland’s most exciting and diverse theatre festival returns to the capital from May 6th to 19th, kicking off the summer season with 21 world class performances from the four corners of the world, across 5 Stages for two glorious weeks this May.
The festival, the largest LGBT+ theatre festival in the world which will be launched tomorrow (16th April) at 6pm in City Assembly House by the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan, brings critically acclaimed productions from the UK, USA, Canada, Ecuador, South Africa and Australia, as well as home-grown talent to Dublin’s stages for this jam-packed two week long event.
Minister Madigan said “I’m delighted to lend my support to the launch of this wonderfully diverse festival. The continued excellence and professionalism shown year on year has ensured the growth of this festival from humble beginnings in 2004 to mark the 150th anniversary of the birth of Oscar Wilde. The fact that these performances can take place in an ever more inclusive Ireland is something that should be celebrated just as enthusiastically. We have come such a long way for the better in this regard.”
The festival, which is in its 16th year has gone from strength to strength, drawing audiences and performers from all over the world to Dublin annually, even weathering the financial cutbacks and darkest days of the financial crisis.
Ms Madigan continued “Through the very financially straightened times from 2008 onwards when funding of the arts suffered severe cutbacks, the internationally famous event that we know today provided a beacon of hope when many festivals and events fell by the wayside. It is indeed testament to the fantastic work of Brian and his team, that performers from as far afield as the United Kingdom, from USA, Canada, South Africa and Australia and of course from Ireland, will perform to packed houses in venues throughout the city from May 6th to 19th.”
This years programme includes a ‘Broadway World Best Actor Award Winner’, a ‘GLOBE Artist of the Year Winner’, a ‘UK National Octagon Prizewinner’, a ‘2019 Fleur Du Cap Best Performance by an Ensemble Nominee’, many other critically acclaimed performers and theatre pieces as well as emerging writers and performers.
Upon launching the festival Brian Merriman festival director said
““I am very grateful for the Minister’s presence today and that of our first supporter and patron Senator David Norris and longtime supporter Senator Jerry Buttimer and other Oireachtas colleagues. To live in a society where diversity is embraced and encouraged is a privilege many of our LGBT+ artists abroad do not enjoy. To identify that need and to place Dublin at the centre of welcoming diverse artists and writers has, in the absence of sustainable resources, been the key to the longevity and relevance of the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival since 2004.”
“Artists at home identify this Festival as being one open to new voices. We are. Artists abroad make huge sacrifices to tell their stories here. Our audiences understand the art form and are open to theatre holding a truthful mirror up to society as we know and live it today. The topics are historic and contemporary. They are shared by other sections of society and all are welcome in our festival.”
“The Me Too experience not only impacts on women but on gay actors too, drug abuse and chemsex is a reality of life today. Parenting, masculinity, relationships and how to hold onto them, changing times in the Gardai and in seminaries all feature in our theatrical discussion. The still almost silence on the age of AIDS and modern HIV diagnosis is challenged as is the experience of secrets in the past. The hidden lives of heroic Irish women are among the dark and very funny characters you will encounter. There are stories of criminalisation, love, growing up in Ireland or the Deep South, from talented and award winning artists waiting to take to our small stages.”
“Do something different this year – see these wonderful plays – they complete the theatrical conversation that informs and shapes the contribution of the arts to a modern society.”
Media contact: Sean Hegarty PR Director
For more information and to purchase tickets visit www.gaytheatre.ie
Founder & Artistic Director of IDGTF, Brian Merriman introduces the 2019 programme:
Welcome to our “sweet 16th!”
We are honoured to present twenty one plays in four city centre venues from Ireland, UK, USA, Canada, South Africa and Australia this year.
We are in awe of the work of these innovative writers and companies who choose our festival as one of the world’s best spaces for LGBT+ theatre to thrive and to be appreciated.
What is even more encouraging is that we are not without choice. Almost 100 companies were in contact this year and had we more resources and support to offer, they could have joined us too.
We are delighted to welcome new Irish writers and companies this year and hope this small international cultural networking event we host will mean their work will be showcased abroad too.
Thanks to the increased support of the Arts Council and Dublin City Council and our kind commercial sponsors, we are still here.
Most especially, after 15 years, we were rewarded with an influx of new and generous volunteers on our hard-working executive team. They have made the difference in pushing out new boundaries and in broadening our welcome for all. Thank you.
We welcome everyone as our audience and appreciate it when you share our information online. If you have a new play for next year or want to volunteer check out www.gaytheatre.ie for information.
Ireland has changed a lot since year one. Many countries continue to discriminate and silence LGBT+ voices in the arts. It is important that Dublin provides a stage and an audience for this quality art form.
Thank you for your company during the artistic celebration of diversity that is the 16th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival!
6The programme for the 16th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival was launched today at the City Assembly Rooms, South William Street with guests of honour Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Josepha Madigan TD and Festival Patron, Senator David Norris.
Artistic Director & Festival Founder Brian Merriman introduced the programme with to an audience of participants, media, volunteers and invited guests.
To find out more:
Twenty diverse shows with LGBT+ themes will arrive on Dublin city centre stages
for the 16th International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival from May 6-19th 2019.
Following an extensive curatorial process, the Festival has secured productions
from Ireland, UK, USA, Canada, South Africa and Australia to perform over the two
week long event in May.
“New writing continues to dominate the selection process which also included
visiting 50 productions at the Edinburgh Fringe. I am delighted that South Africa
and Australian LGBT theatre return with new companies this year and acknowledge
the great efforts these companies make to showcase their work at the world’s
biggest Gay Theatre event in Dublin” said artistic director, Brian Merriman.
“We are pleased that new Irish companies are embracing this genre with
challenging and important LGBT stories for the stage. This opportunity to share
stages and network internationally within this theatrical genre is hugely important
for all writers and artists and has sustained us for our 16th year”, he added.
Details of the selected shows will be announced later this month at a launch event
“We are very pleased to have increased support this year from The Arts Council
and Dublin City Council to help us build mainstream audiences for such an
innovative programme of work, as we meet the challenges to let audiences know
that everyone is welcome at our Festival”, concluded Brian Merriman.
Festival updates regularly appear on www.gaytheatre.ie , and on social media.
For press information, email Sean at firstname.lastname@example.org
The programme for IDGTF 2019 is now available with secure online booking.
IDGTF 2019 takes place from May 6 – 19 with tickets €10/€13/€15.
The programme features a range of drama, comedy, comedy drama and more with productions from Ireland and 3 continents. Details of free events will be announced shortly.
We are viewing LGBT-related works and artists at the 2019 Edinburgh Festival Fringe!
Each year we seek works and artists who may be interested in participating in the International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival. We have invited many works from Edinburgh to Dublin (and in turn many of our productions have gone on to perform at Edinburgh).
Want to speak to us or have a suitable work?
We will also be at the promoter’s breakfast on Sunday 19th August.
You can find out more about IDGTF on our Submissions page.
The second half of our programme, designed to celebrate 25 years since the decriminalisation of homosexuality in Ireland, sees plays covering a range of topical issues; from historical LGBT figures, visibility, the Trump era, bisexuality, surrogacy and alcoholism are packed into Week Two of a most innovative programme of theatre that makes Dublin the leading international centre in the world.
‘Tab and Landon’ from Canada is a dark and adults-only insight into scandalous family relationships arriving from Theatre Outré, Canada.
‘Women’s Shorts’ features a trio of powerful and funny pieces about LGBT women. The hilarious ‘Butt Trumpet’ (USA) reveals some unusual ‘talents’ of Trump’s former spokeswoman Kellyanne Conway. ‘Cherry Pickings’ (UK) follows queer women on a night out and ‘Unseasonable’ (USA) explores the aftermath for two women of a mysterious incident.
“Memories We Lost in the Fire” (UK) and “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” (Ireland) both explore young gay/bi men on a journey to understand their sexuality.
Renowned lesbian playwright, Carolyn Gage’s insight into Marty Mann, founder of the National Council on Alcoholism premieres from the USA in “Easter Sunday” (running in a double-bill with lesbian relationship comedy “The Christmas Drill”)
Irelands Blue Heart Theatre Company premieres ‘Passing On’ a story of surrogacy, family and choices as a gay couple’s plans to have a child are thrown off-course by a shocking revelation.
This week also presents an opportunity to see “2 HIStories” a duet of short stories from festival founder and artistic director Brian Merriman, exploring Irish life in the 1980s and UCD founder Cardinal Newman’s lifelong friendship with Fr Ambrose St John.
Our main programme starts with €10 Monday matinees at 2:30pm and 4pm.
See the following tomorrow (matinee & evening) with more shows starting on Friday:
Be inspired, moved and entertained with stories from around the world, all for amazing value!
The Drowning Room – a family gather to remember the victim of a ‘gay bashing’. But unexpected events lead to dark secrets being revealed. A powerful drama with a twist.
Ginger Beer – a frank and funny comedy about the perils of being a gay man in 2018 – Grindr, saunas, chemsex… and the perfect dick pic.
3 Lies About Brooklyn – shipped as a baby by Irish nuns to Brooklyn in the 1950’s, John Farrell tells his extraordinary true story of search for his true identity and sexuality.
Let Me Look At You – a 50-something gay man shares his misadventures in this comedy drama from the UK.
Breda’s Way – lesbian comic Breda Larkin investigates ‘the moving statues’ of summer 1985 in a humorous exploration of gender, faith and life in Ireland.
Writers in the Stars – Oscar Wilde, Shakespeare and Mary Shelley debate ‘who is the greatest’ in heaven. A comedy drama with LGBT twists!
Men’s Shorts – 3 short comedy plays – gay dating, wedding mishaps and a “straight” mate with a secret!
SMASHES – an award-winning comedy about bi visibility past & present – coming out, making out & getting inspiration from a past feminist heroine.
Beloved Sinner – relive Oscar Wilde’s last days in Paris in this captivating piece.
Our main Box Office will be closed on Bank Holiday Monday (to re-open on Tues May 8th). It is also open on Saturday May 5th.
Tickets will still be available:
This new book of 10 short plays by Festival Artistic Director & Founder Brian Merriman, marking 25 years since decriminalisation in Ireland and 15 years of IDGTF, has been launched.
The book ‘10 HISstories: ‘Party Boy’ & Nine Irish Gay Plays‘ is available for sale:
At the IDGTF Box Office
At IDGTF venues from May 6-20
Online via Ticketsolve
Price: €10 (or €15 with postage)