Home : Introductions : Theatre intro : Mairin

Máirín O'Grady

Mairin main 


Máirín O Grady is a Writer/Director from Newbridge, Co. Kildare.  She is the Artistic Director of CARAVAN/ON/FIRE/COLLECTIVE a multi-disciplinary arts collective focused mainly on theatre. 

Máirín holds an M.Phil in Creative Writing from Trinity College Dublin.

She has published poetry, prose, and drama in Commotions – New Writing from the Oscar Wilde Centre, an anthology created and published by the students of the M.Phil in early 2009, and is a contributor to Foiseach Magazine.

Máirín was shortlisted for Over The Edge New Writer of the Year 2008, and was awarded a writer’s residency in Art Factory, Bialystok, Poland for September 2010.

She has trained and interned with La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club in East Village, Manhattan, and was a selected participant in Theatre Forum’s The Next Stage 2010.

She has performed as Josie in John and Josie by Rosaleen Mc Donagh as part of Dublin Gay Theatre Festival 2009. She has taken part in Ignite Dublin as a performance poet, and worked with Tim Crouch on a performed reading of his new text at Project Brand New The Magic If… 2010.

Production history:

Ourselves Workshopped with Tom Kilroy in the Samuel Beckett Theatre, Trinity College, Dublin December 2008;

Fox! Performed by CARAVAN/ON/FIRE/COLLECTIVE in the found space of a hay shed in Roseberry, Newbridge, Co. Kildare on 18th and 19th September 2009.

Forest. Performed by CARAVAN/ON/FIRE/COLLECTIVE in Project Arts Centre, Temple Bar as part of The Theatre Machine Turns You On festival on 5th December 2009.

Oh! Away! Site-specific piece written for and performed by the children of Christ Orphanage, Hohoe, Ghana on 18th March 2010.

Why do I make theatre?

“I hope the piece may work on the nerves of it’s audience not it’s intellect.” Samuel Beckett in relation to Not I.

I believe that theatre should be of primal feelings rather than academic ones. I believe that theatre should be an open, universal, and human space. An audience should have their primal feelings and fears provoked, not merely their thoughts or opinions. I wish for my work to be a galvanising force, not an illustration.

I believe that ownership and commitment are crucial in theatre –  both  for the audience and the production. My ambition in theatre is to deliver to the audience an ownership of the performance itself, and to witness them commit to it. I want to make the audience feel my work is unescapably of them and for them. Within the production itself I want the performers to have an ownership of the performance as theirs, and to have a commitment to its’ deliverance. The point at which the audience and the perfomance agree to own and to commit is the point at which theatre becomes true. I want to create work where the performance ceases to think but to be, and for the audience to recognise and reflect this.

I chose theatre over prose or poetry because it is live. And is thus, like me, a container of nervous energy.

What is your ambition? / What do you want?

I want to have my eyes open to all the visible and invisible beauty available. To accumulate a witnessing of life strata to weave into my own work.

I want to constantly develop my work and to force it to grow in new directions. I want to develop my skills as a writer/director both mutually and independently so that an evolution in one leads to an evolution in the other.

I want most of all to be entirely absorbed in creation.

I want to receive recognition and mutual stimulation within a community and to support myself financially in this.

What captures your imagination?

Gestures that are both beauty and chaos. The witnessing of patterns that crescendo and break. I am fascinated by the points of surprise and power – where something contained breaks free, or where something free becomes contained. We exist in flux an I like reflect that – to be caught in the wind.

Images / videos of other work


Fox 1 

Fox 2 

Fox 3 

Fox 4 


Forest 1 

Forest 2 

Forest 3 

'Oh, Away'

oh away 1 

oh away 2