Best Theatre of 2016


Theatre Highlights of 2016 by M. Quinn

An unusual year in Theatre with much change at some of the bigger institutions such as the Abbey and the Gate. Change is definitely a good thing and we look forward to something bright and new from both of them. The Abbey had a few impressive moments last year with Anna Karenina being one of the highlights. It was another strong year for Druid with a great version of Waiting For Godot although it would be good to see them do more new work.

The Best Dance of the Year included The Circus Animal’s Desertion as part of the Theatre Festival. There was also the quite stunning Betroffenheit as part of the Dublin Dance Festival.

The Dublin Theatre festival highlights included Guerrilla at the Project Arts Centre and ZVIZDAL (Chernobyl – so far so close) which definitely wasn’t traditional theatre but was still very enjoyable.


The Tiger Dublin Fringe was in town in September with gems such as The Aeneid at Smock Alley and This Beach at the Project Arts Centre. One of the smaller productions that I really enjoyed was Glowworm at the Project Arts Centre. To Hell in a Handbag was one of the ‘Shows in a bag’ by Fishamble, which continues to help create exciting new work.

Some of the best work outside of traditional theatre settings included Signatories at Kilmainham Gaol and of course Anu with Sunder, which was one of their many productions last year and probably their best.


Pan Pan returned with The Importance of Nothing at the Project Arts Centre along with bringing the wonderful Belgian/ American outfit Random Scream into our lives. 7 Promises and What You Need To Know were two of the best things I saw on stage this year.


The Wise Wound at Smock Alley annoyed some for not being quite PC enough, but was very well done none the less. After Miss Julie at the Project Arts Centre brought new life to an old play. Other events worth a mention include Taboo at the New Theatre. The good work continued at Theatre Upstairs with Test Dummy showcasing the powerful presence of Caitriona Ennis. While Wild Sky at Bewleys was one of the best to commemorate the 1916 Rising.


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