SCENA Theatre presents The Seafarer, the modern classic by Ireland's greatest contemporary playwright, Conor McPherson.

Washington, DC — March 1, 2012 — The Directors of SCENA Theatre announce the third production of their 24th season, The Seafarer by the acclaimed modern Irish playwright Conor McPherson. Once again, SCENA is flying in two acclaimed actors from Ireland (Brian Mallon and David Mitchell) to give this production a genuine Irish soul, as it did in its 2009 production of The Weir. What's more, this production features a highly renowned actor from Britain (David Bryan Jackson), plus two distinguished Washington-area actors with vast experience performing foreign works (Eric Lucas and Joe Palka).

The Seafarer will be directed by SCENA's Artistic Director Robert McNamara, who holds an M.Lit degree from Dublin, Ireland's Trinity College and who was Artistic Director of Dublin Stage One Theatre, which produced numerous premieres. Altogether, Washingtonians will get to experience a rich and unique play that embodies international theatre at its finest.


$10 previews for The Seafarer will take place on April 7 (8 pm), April 8 (3 pm), and April 11 (8 pm). Opening night is Thursday, April 12, 2012 at 8 pm (also Press Night), featuring a wine and cheese reception after the show. Members of the press: kindly RSVP to to attend Press Night (or an alternate performance if you have a conflict). 


The text of The Seafarer is rich with dynamic Irish dialogue and wit, as only McPherson can write. The plot begins with "Sharky" returning home to a suburb of Dublin to take care of his blind, ungrateful brother. The pair join a group of Irish mates and play a whiskey-fueled card game on Christmas Eve. Suddenly, a man from Sharky's past arrives to collect an old bet dating back 25 years. Now, Sharky must examine his past choices and take responsibility for his recklessness. Will he pull himself out of the depths of darkness—or be swallowed by a hell of his own making?

The Seafarer represents a growth in McPherson's work as a playwright. Coming from the eerie spirit world of The Weir, McPherson now plunges us into the private hell of Sharky as he fights demonic forces in the form of Mr. Lockhart to save his soul over a card game. This play is much like a fable from the Bible that is crossed with an update of Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus -- with a special acerbic Irish twist.

This unique production of The Seafarer is yet another great work from Ireland that SCENA is producing for theatre-goers in Washington, DC. "SCENA Theatre has a longstanding tradition of producing great Irish works for 24 years -- from Samuel Beckett and Oscar Wilde, to William Butler Yeats and Conor McPherson" noted Artistic Director Robert McNamara. This production comes on the heels of the annual "Yeats Trio" -- staged readings of three of the greatest short plays by William Butler Yeats, a widely celebrated Irish writer.

Previews:  April 7 (8pm), 8 (3pm) & 11 (8pm)  at 8 pm & Sun at 3 pm

Opening:  April 12 (8pm),   which is also Press Night

Schedule:  April 12 – May 20: Thurs – Sat  at 8 pm & Sun at 3 pm

Price: $15 - $40 


1365 H Street NE

Washington, DC 20002

Event: Friday April 20: a special event reception is at 8 pm.

And, the performance will begin at 10 pm.

Press: Email:

Phone: 719-963-6962  OR

Click: on Press link (at left) for Photos

Tickets: Click on Tickets link at left or

Reserve by Phone 703-683-2824.

Parking: Valet Parking is available at the Rock n Roll Hotel (1353 H St., a few doors from the Playhouse). If driving, side-street parking is suggested (Maryland Ave, 10th–12th Streets, etc.). Also, the X2 Metrobus runs down H Street. Visit for schedules.

Deals: Student Specials” – $15 tickets for all Students on Thursdays & Sundays. Please show student IDs for discount. 

Cast & Crew: The distinguished cast of The Seafarer includes renowned talent from around the globe including Ireland’s Brian Mallon & David Mitchell, plus Britain's David Bryan Jackson, and Washington's Eric Lucas and Joe Palka. The accomplished design team includes Michael C. Stepowany (Set), Erik Trester (Sound), Marianne Meadows (Lights), Kevin Laughton (Props), Megan Holeva (Costumes), Melanie Shur (Stage Manager), Dennis Kelner (Assistant Stage Manager) & Amy Kellett (Production Manager)

Conor McPherson (Playwright) is deemed one of the best contemporary Irish playwrights today. His plays have garnered critical acclaim, and have been performed internationally. McPherson achieved great notoriety after the debut of THE WEIR in 1999 at the Royal Court Theatre in London, a play he wrote at the young age of 27. SCENA produced THE WEIR last season to rave reviews. McPherson's other famous plays include: Port Authority, which was first produced in 2001, Dublin Carol in 2003 (which SCENA produced in 2009), and Shining City from 2004, which earned him the distinction as “the finest dramatist of his generation“ by The Telegraph in London. McPherson was born in Dublin, Ireland and studied at University College Dublin where he began writing his first plays as a member of UCD Dramsoc, the college's dramatic society. He went on to found Fly By Night Theatre Company, which produced several of his plays.

SCENA Theatre brings the best international theatre to Washington, DC and to stimulates cultural exchange between theatre artists, locally and worldwide. Founded in 1987 under the leadership of Artistic Director Robert McNamara and Managing Director Amy Schmidt, SCENA produces an annual season of plays, seasonally staged readings, as well as a Workshop Series aimed at developing new works from around the globe. To learn more about our mission or past stage productions, please call 703-684-7990.