Abbey Theatre in the Irish Literary Renaissance Criticism: Origins And Development - Essay

W. B. Yeats (interview date 25 May 1910)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Yeats, W. B. “Irish National Drama.” In The Abbey Theatre: Interviews and Recollections, edited by E. H. Mikhail, pp. 98-100. London, United Kingdom: Macmillan Press Ltd., 1988.

[In the following interview, originally published in 1910, one of the founders of the Abbey Theatre discusses the peasant plays of the Abbey Theatre as part of a dramatic movement “that is representative of the social life and the economic conditions of Ireland.”]

‘The side of our work with which we have achieved our greatest successes,’ said Mr. Yeats to our representative, ‘is undoubtedly the peasant comedy and tragedy. We have placed upon the stage for the first time...

(The entire section is 1024 words.)

George W. Russell (essay date 2 January 1926)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Russell, George W. “The Coming of Age of the Abbey.” In The Abbey Theatre: Interviews and Recollections, edited by E. H. Mikhail, pp. 136-40. London, United Kingdom: Macmillan Press Ltd., 1988.

[In the following essay, first published in The Irish Statesman on January 2, 1926, Russell, an important figure in the Irish Literary Renaissance who signed his poetry with the initials “A. E.,” discusses his experiences with the Abbey Theatre at the height of the Literary Revival.]

About a quarter of a century ago Ireland began to assert and practise its right to cultural independence, making it apparent to the world that it had a distinction, a...

(The entire section is 1786 words.)

Andrew E. Malone (essay date 1938)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Malone, Andrew E. “The Early History of the Abbey Theatre.” In The Irish Theatre: Lectures Delivered During the Abbey Theatre Festival Held in Dublin in August 1938, edited by Lennox Robinson, pp. 3-29. London, Great Britain: Macmillan & Co. Ltd., 1939.

[In the following essay, originally given at the first Abbey Theatre Dramatic Festival in 1938, Malone recounts the early history of the Abbey Theatre.]

Conscious as I am of the great compliment which has been paid to me by the invitation to deliver the opening address at this first Abbey Theatre Dramatic Festival, I feel myself more than a little out of place. This introductory lecture should be...

(The entire section is 6398 words.)

W. G. Fay (essay date October 1947)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Fay, W. G. “How We Began the Abbey.” In The Abbey Theatre: Interviews and Recollections, edited by E. H. Mikhail, pp. 15-8. London, United Kingdom: Macmillan Press Ltd., 1988.

[In the following essay, originally published in 1947, Fay, one of the original actors at the Abbey Theatre along with his brother, Frank Fay, provides his personal impressions of the founding of the Abbey Theatre.]

When Seumas O'Sullivan saw at the Antient Concert Rooms, Dublin, the first performance of W. B. Yeats' verse play, The Countess Cathleen, amongst the audience was James Joyce. What neither of them was aware of, as they watched the performance of The Countess...

(The entire section is 1483 words.)