Already closed | 1h 40m | Chelsea

The Aran Islands

From 14 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Slow, Absorbing, Intense, Intelligent

About the show

Irish Repertory Theatre presents a new adaptation of John Millington Synge’s classic work chronicling his travels to the desolate Aran Islands. More…

In 1898, upon the advice of W.B. Yeats, Synge went to live among the islanders to "express a life that has never found expression.’’ In this grey, sea-battered landscape, full of mist and wild rain, hearth is home and storytellers spin tales by the fire. Here Synge found inspiration for many later works including 'The Playboy of the Western World' and 'Riders to the Sea.' Irish actor Brendan Conroy tackles the story of Synge's time in this bleakly primitive, mystical land.

Member Reviews (14)


Great acting, Slow, Absorbing, Intense, Intelligent

Ambitious, Clever, Intelligent, Slow, Indulgent

See it if you're a fan of Synge & are curious about his non-fiction & its impact on his plays, enjoy 1-person shows in which the actor plays all roles

Don't see it if you can't concentrate during 1-person shows or deal with a variety of Irish accents, troubled by what the Irish had to endure every day

Also This play is based on Synge's notes and essays while visiting and rese... Read more Read less

Disappointing, Great acting, Great writing, Slow

See it if you love J.M Synge and can't read the works yourself. Great presentation of the work but a little boring.

Don't see it if you don't like one-person shows or Irish literature.

June 19th, 2017
"A faithful, if soporific adaptation...O'Byrne's adaptation and production (he also directs) eschews that dramatic potential for something a lot closer to a staged reading...Unfortunately, there is so little variation between the different characters that we feel like we're watching one long stor...
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June 23rd, 2017
"A travelogue with a fancy literary pedigree...Elegantly written, it's a tall order for adaptation to the stage...For all their effort, however, the result is pretty static...‘The Aran Islands’ is filled with tales but they don't compensate for the lack of an overall dramatic thrust. It might hel...
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June 19th, 2017
"Conroy, a chameleon-like actor, is a mostly riveting presence...A criticism of O'Byrne's adaptation of 'The Aran Islands,' a unique hybrid of memoir and documentary, to a stage monologue would be that it gives the same weight to Synge and the storytellers as it does to their folktales...It's eas...
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June 20th, 2017
“The demands placed on its star Brendan Conroy are of Wagnerian scale…While Brendan Conroy does an admirable job playing the many characters and Joe O’Byrne’s crisp direction keeps the proceedings moving, after about an hour a sense of sameness sets in. I would like to see Synge’s splendid study,...
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