Abbey Theatre

Abbey Theatre, Irish theatrical company devoted primarily to indigenous drama. W. B. Yeats was a leader in founding (1902) the Irish National Theatre Society with Lady Gregory, J. M. Synge, and A. E. (George Russell) contributing their talents as directors and dramatists. In 1904, Annie Horniman gave them a subsidy and the free use of the Abbey Theatre in Dublin. The theater was bought for them by public subscription in 1910. Among dramatists whose works the Abbey Theatre first presented are Padraic Colum, Lennox Robinson, Sean O'Casey, and Paul Vincent Carroll. The theater is now in a new building constructed in 1966. In close association with Irish dramatists, the Abbey also has been an important instrument in the revival of Irish drama that began in the 1960s.

See Lady Gregory, Our Irish Theatre (1913), and her journals (ed. by L. Robinson, 1946); H. Hunt, The Abbey: Ireland's National Theatre, 1904–1978 (1979); P. Kavanagh, Story of the Abbey Theatre (1984); R. Welch, The Abbey Theatre, 1899–1999 (1999).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2015, The Columbia University Press.

Abbey Theatre: Selected full-text books and articles

The Abbey Theatre, 1899-1999: Form and Pressure By Robert Welch Oxford University Press, 1999
The Fays of the Abbey Theatre: An Autobiographical Record By W. G. Fay; Catherine Carswell Harcourt Brace and Company, 1935
Joseph Holloway's Abbey Theatre: A Selection from His Unpublished Journal, Impressions of a Dublin Playgoer By Joseph Holloway; Robert Hogan; Michael J. O'Neill Southern Illinois University Press, 1967
W. B. Yeats, 1865-1939 By Joseph Hone Macmillan, 1943
Librarian’s tip: Chap. IX "The Abbey Theatre"
Plays and Controversies By W. B. Yeats Macmillan, 1924
FREE! John Millington Synge and the Irish Theatre By Maurice Bourgeois Constable, 1913
Librarian’s tip: Chap. V "The Irish Dramatic Movement before Synge and His Relation to the Abbey Theatre School"
Irish Playwrights, 1880-1995: A Research and Production Sourcebook By Bernice Schrank; William W. Demastes Greenwood Press, 1997
Librarian’s tip: Includes discussion of the Abbey Theatre in multiple chapters
Theatre Companies of the World By Colby H. Kullman; William C. Young Greenwood Press, vol.2, 1986
Librarian’s tip: "Abbey Theatre Company" begins on p. 664
The Independent Theatre in Europe, 1887 to the Present By Anna Irene Miller Ray Long & Rihcard R. Smith, 1931
Librarian’s tip: Chap. VI "The National Theatre of Ireland"
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