The Ferryman (play)
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The Ferryman Play

The Ferryman
The Ferryman artwork.jpg
Official production artwork
Written byJez Butterworth
Date premiered24 April 2017
Place premieredRoyal Court Theatre
Original languageEnglish
SettingRural County Armagh, 1981

The Ferryman is a 2017 play by Jez Butterworth. Set during The Troubles, it tells the story of the family of a former IRA activist, living in their farmhouse in rural County Armagh, Northern Ireland in 1981.[1]


The Ferryman had its world premiere at the Royal Court Theatre on 24 April 2017 running to 20 May, directed by Sam Mendes.[2] It was the fastest-selling play in Royal Court Theatre history.[3] The cast included Paddy Considine, Laura Donnelly (the disappearance of her real-life uncle, Eugene Simons, was the inspiration for Butterworth's plot),[4]Genevieve O'Reilly, Bríd Brennan, Fra Fee, John Hodgkinson, Stuart Graham, Gerard Horan, Carla Langley, Des McAleer, Conor MacNeill, Rob Malone, Dearbhla Molloy, Eugene O'Hare and Niall Wright.[5]

The production transferred to the Gielgud Theatre, opening on 29 June 2017, following previews from 20 June.[3] After a first cast change on 9 October 2017 with William Houston (Quinn Carney), Sarah Greene (Caitlin Carney), Ivan Kaye (Tom Kettle) and others joining the company,[6] a second cast change took place on 8 January 2018, featuring Rosalie Craig, Owen McDonnell (as Quinn Carney), Laurie Kynaston (as Oisin Carney) and Justin Edwards.[7] The production closed on 19 May 2018.

The production transferred to the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre on Broadway, beginning previews on 2 October 2018. The play, which went on to win four Tony Awards, closed on 7 July 2019.[8][9]

Cast and characters

Role Royal Court / 1st Gielgud Cast 2nd Gielgud Cast Original Broadway Cast
Aunt Maggie Far Away Brid Brennan Maureen Beattie Fionnula Flanagan
Lawrence Malone Turlough Convery Glenn Speers
Michael Carney Fra Fee
Muldoon Stuart Graham
Tom Kettle John Hodgkinson Ivan Kaye Justin Edwards
Shena Carney Carla Langley
Diarmaid Corcoran Conor MacNeill
Aunt Pat Dearbhla Molloy
Mary Carney Genevieve O'Reilly Catherine McCormack Genevieve O'Reilly
Quinn Carney Paddy Considine William Houston Paddy Considine
Caitlin Carney Laura Donnelly Sarah Greene Laura Donnelly
Shane Corcoran Tom Glynn-Carney Laurie Davidson Tom Glynn-Carney
Father Horrigan Gerard Horan Charles Dale
Uncle Pat Des McAleer Mark Lambert
Oisin Carney Rob Malone
Frank Magennis Eugene O'Hare Fergal McElherron Dean Ashton
JJ Carney Niall Wright
Mercy Carney Elise Alexandre
Darcey Conway
Darcy Jacobs
Scarlett Nunes
Willow McCarthy
Honor Carney Sophia Ally
Grace Doherty
Matilda Zazie
Lucy Warburton
Matilda Lawler
Nunu Carney Clara Murphy
Angel O'Callaghan
Isla Griffiths
Brooklyn Shuck
Declan Corcoran Michael McCarthy
Xavier Moras Spencer
Jack Nuttall
Alex Warburton
Jack Nuttall
Tom Harrison
Michael Quinton McArthur

Awards and nominations

Original London production

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2017 Critics' Circle Theatre Award[10] Best New Play Jez Butterworth Won
Evening Standard Theatre Award[11] Best Play Jez Butterworth Won
Best Director Sam Mendes Won
Best Actress Laura Donnelly Nominated
Emerging Talent Award Tom Glynn-Carney Won
2018 WhatsOnStage Award[12] Best New Play Won
Best Supporting Actor in a Play Fra Fee Won
Best Director Sam Mendes Won
Laurence Olivier Award[13] Best New Play Won
Best Actor Paddy Considine Nominated
Best Actress Laura Donnelly Won
Best Actor in a Supporting Role John Hodgkinson Nominated
Best Actress in a Supporting Role Bríd Brennan Nominated
Dearbhla Molloy Nominated
Best Director Sam Mendes Won
Best Set Design Rob Howell Nominated

Broadway production

Year Award Category Nominee Result
2019 Tony Awards[14] Best Play Won
Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Play Paddy Considine Nominated
Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play Laura Donnelly Nominated
Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play Fionnula Flanagan Nominated
Best Direction of a Play Sam Mendes Won
Best Scenic Design of a Play Rob Howell Won
Best Costume Design of a Play Won
Best Lighting Design of a Play Peter Mumford Nominated
Best Sound Design of a Play Nick Powell Nominated
Drama Desk Award[15] Outstanding Play Won
Outstanding Featured Actor in a Play Tom Glynn-Carney Won
Outstanding Director of a Play Sam Mendes Won
Outstanding Sound Design in a Play Nick Powell Won
Drama League Awards[16] Outstanding Production of a Broadway or Off-Broadway Play Won
Distinguished Performance Award Paddy Considine Nominated
Outer Critics Circle Awards[17] Outstanding New Broadway Play Won
Outstanding Featured Actress in a Play Fionnula Flanagan Nominated
Outstanding Director of a Play Sam Mendes Won
Outstanding Scenic Design (Play or Musical) Rob Howell Nominated
Outstanding Costume Design (Play or Musical) Nominated


  1. ^ Billington, Michael. "The Ferryman review - Butterworth and Mendes deliver shattering tale of passion and violence". The Guardian. The Guardian. Retrieved 2018.
  2. ^ Hewis, Ben (31 October 2017). "Sam Mendes to direct Jez Butterworth play in new Royal Court season". Retrieved 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Jez Butterworth's The Ferryman transfers to The Gielgud Theatre". London Theatre. 8 February 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  4. ^ Dex, Robert (4 May 2017). "How The Ferryman was inspired by true life story from one of the cast". Evening Standard. Retrieved 2017.
  5. ^ "Cast and West End transfer confirmed for Sam Mendes' The Ferryman". 8 February 2017. Retrieved 2017.
  6. ^ "New cast announced for The Ferryman". Retrieved 2018.
  7. ^ "Casting Update for The Ferryman - Royal Court". Royal Court. 28 November 2017. Retrieved 2018.
  8. ^ "Tickets Released for Broadway Transfer of Jez Butterworth's The Ferryman - Royal Court". Royal Court. 5 March 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  9. ^ Clement, Olivia. "Tony-Winning 'The Ferryman' Ends on Broadway July 7" Playbill, July 7, 2019
  10. ^ "2017 Results | Critics' Circle Theatre Awards". 31 January 2018. Retrieved 2020.
  11. ^ Hemley, Matthew. " 'The Ferryman' triumphs at the London Evening Standard Theatre Awards" The Stage, 3 December 2017
  12. ^ "Winners of the 18th Annual WhatsOnStage Awards announced: David Tennant and Olivia Colman win". Retrieved 2018.
  13. ^ "Olivier Awards 2018: the nominations in full". The Stage. 6 March 2018. Retrieved 2018.
  14. ^ [1]
  15. ^ Fierberg, Ruthie. " 'Tootsie', 'Hadestown', and 'The Ferryman' Lead 2019 Drama Desk Award Winners" Playbill, June 2, 2019
  16. ^ Lefkowitz, Andy (17 April 2019). "Nominations Announced for 85th Annual Drama League Awards". Retrieved 2019.
  17. ^ Lefkowitz, Andy (23 April 2019). "Hadestown, Tootsie & Oklahoma! Lead 2019 Outer Critics Circle Award Nominations". Retrieved 2019.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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