A Bit of Dublin Theatre on a Portland Stage

While searching for material for RTR’s traditionally Irish March show, co-artistic director of Readers Theatre Repertory, Mary McDonald-Lewis, made a new friend. “I found what I consider a sister company in Dublin,” she said. On March 13-14, McDonald-Lewis introduced Portland to the company with A Bit of Dublin Theatre

McDonald-Lewis discovered Bewley’s Café Theatre online “when I kept reading about all of their great shows,” she said. A correspondence began, and Readers Theatre Rep staged two Bewley Café shows, “Fred and Jane,” by Sebastian Barry, and “So Long, Sleeping Beauty,” by Isobel Mahon.

The director said the shows would serve as a small act of contrition for her starkly funny February show, which gleefully skewered love. “Both of these plays get at deeply important relationships in nuanced, sad, and hopeful ways.” Fred and Jane examines two nuns’ friendship, while So Long Sleeping Beauty brings two grieving lovers together in a surprising, redemptive way.

“One day I hope to see more of Bewley’s work,” said McDonald-Lewis, “and I sure hope it’s because I’m sojourning for a long fine autumn in Dublin.”

More on Bewley’s Café Theatre can be found at www.bewleyscafetheatre.com

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