'Breath-taking success': Everyman production of Cork woman's novel set for UK premiere

'Breath-taking success': Everyman production of Cork woman's novel set for UK premiere
Meadbh McHugh who adapted Asking For It for stage, Author Louise O'Neill, Julie Kelleher, Artistic Director of the Everyman Theatre and Anne Clarke, Landmark Productions.Pic Darragh Kane

An Everyman Theatre hit production is poised for international success following a string of sold-out runs in Ireland.

‘Asking for It’, Landmark Productions and The Everyman Theatre’s sensational adaptation of Louise O’Neill’s novel about sexual consent, is set to premiere in the UK.

The play will be staged in the Birmingham Repertory Theatre, beginning Tuesday, February 4.

The play received its Irish premiere at The Everyman in Cork in 2018 and subsequently played to packed houses at the Abbey and Gaiety Theatres in Dublin.

The novel’s author, Clonakilty-woman Louise O’Neill said: “It was so important to me that the premiere of ‘Asking For It’ was in Cork, my home county. Seeing the play for the first time at The Everyman Theatre was such a special moment, as was witnessing how it resonated with audiences, both in Cork and in Dublin.

“Irish drama has had a long and storied tradition of being celebrated in theatres across the UK and I'm excited to see how the audience in Birmingham will respond to Asking For It. Thanks to the co-producers, Julie Kelleher of The Everyman and Anne Clarke of Landmark, the genius of Annabelle Comyn and Meadhbh McHugh, and the incredible work of the wildly talented cast, I believe this has the potential to become the next great Irish play." 

“We’re excited to be giving the show its UK premiere at such a storied and historic venue as the Birmingham Rep," Julie Kelleher, Artistic Director of The Everyman said. "Though this story has a Cork voice at its heart, its themes are sadly universal.” 

Meanwhile, Seán Kelly, Executive Director at The Everyman said that the play has had “breath-taking success in Ireland, enjoying one sold-out run after another and rave critical reviews. It also stands as a unique testament to a vital, urgent subject and has become a cultural and social phenomenon as a result.

“On behalf of everyone at The Everyman, I’m immensely proud that, in partnership with Landmark Productions, we are able to bring this astonishing show beyond our borders for the first time,” he concluded.

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