Strive Theatre exists to offer an expressive outlet to theatre artists in the community.

To develop the seeds of ideas into production-ready works of value.

Play Development Scheme 



A two-part reading phase starting with a cold read of a new script, after which the writer asks all questions of the reading team seeking feedback. This is followed by a rehearsed reading receiving double time rehearsal (3 hrs per 1.5 hr play) with a cast of actors and a director. The invited audience engage in a structured feedback session after the reading.

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A workshop development phase where a team of creatives engage in a variety of techniques with the writer, director and facilitator in order to give the playwright full perspective on what they have written.

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Following the completion of phases one and two, and a series of meetings at each stage of the development, writer/ maker and company embark on a collaborative production process.

A Comic Play with Social & Cultural Resonance


Siobhán is back in East Cork, fresh off the boat from London where her journalism career didn’t hit the dizzying heights she hoped it might. Back in the nest, she discovers her mother and cousin Mags have adopted new age spiritual practices to help cope with a death in the family. While worshipping at the altar of self-help, they try to encourage the deeply cynical and newly nihilistic Siobhán out of her slump. This new play by Shaunna Lee Lynch explores the mystical and materialistic aspects of self- improvement culture.

The show humorously explores the benefits and pitfalls of self-help philosophy, new age spirituality and self-improvement culture. In an attempt to live their best lives the characters seek direction from local gurus, spiritual healers, fortune tellers, Instagram Shamans, boastful Buddhists and anyone else who might help them manifest their goals, whatever the cost. The play reflects the contemporary Irish zeitgeist: Millennials moving home to their parent's house because of the cost of living, uncertainty about the future, the gap in the God market and what's taking it's place.

The script has been in development since late 2018. The first draft was read as part of BrokenCrow’s Play Clinic in January 2019. The play was further developed with the support of Corcadorca's Theatre Development Centre and The Cork Arts Theatre’s Emerging Artists Programme. Developed at FRINGE LAB with the support of Dublin Fringe Festival.

Wishful Thinking will premiere this September in The New Theatre, Temple Bar as part of The Dublin Fringe Festival. We’ll be bringing it back to Cork for a week long run in The Cork Arts Theatre, November 12th to 16th, as part of their Emerging Artists' Programme.

Tickets €15/€13 available from


Siobhán Griffin - Karen Killeen

Mags O’Riordan - Síofra O’Meara

Angela Griffin - Claire O'Donovan

Blathnaid - Shaunna Lee Lynch

Creative Team

Director/ Producer/ LX Design - Ciarán MacArtain

Playwright/ Producer - Shaunna Lee Lynch

Production Stage Manager - Lovisa Cosgrave

Music/ Sound Design - Benjamin Burns

Set Design - Hanan Sheedy

Technical Manager - Rab Urquhart

The New Theatre, Temple Bar
as part of Dublin Fringe Festival 
September 19th (Preview) 01.00pm
Sept. 20th/21st- 01.00pm & 6.30pm
Tickets available now from

Cork Arts Theatre, Cork
as part of their Emerging Artists Programme 
November 12th-16th 8.00pm
Tickets available now from


A tragedy in 3 acts


Set on a farm in West Cork, the play is a family saga exploring the dynamics of growth, both of food and of people. Nigel dreams of the stars, while his father binds him to the land; Family, freedom and fulfillment are at stake.

This fiery tragedy serves to investigate the relationship between parents and their young against the backdrop of an ever-changing contemporary Ireland, as well as the morality and feasibility of modern food production in the context of huge environmental challenges. Strive Theatre are set to produce this challenging play in Fionnbarras Bar on Douglas St. between Feb. 18th and March 3rd, under the direction of Shaunna Lee Lynch.

The play's extensive development history includes two rehearsed readings in Wandesford Quay Gallery, Cork and The Smock Alley, Dublin and 3 workshop development periods in A4 Sounds, Dublin (1 Week), The TDC @ Triskel in Cork (2 weeks) and Cork School of Music (2 days).

We are delighted to be back working in a found space and would be thrilled to have you join us for the performance!

Tickets 12e/10e available from


Nigel McCabe - Jack H. O’Brian

Michael McCabe - Adrian Spillett

Sarah O’Callaghan - Katie Melia

Katherine McCabe - Ciara Morrin

John McCabe - Brendan Ryan

Creative Team

Director - Shaunna Lee Lynch

Playwright/ Producer/ LX Design - Ciarán MacArtain

Production Stage Manager - Lovisa Cosgrave

Music - Eileen Healy

Sound Design - Concept Design Team

Technical Manager - Rab Urquhart

(working as Concept Design Team)

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A farcical black comedy


The play is a farcical black comedy that delves into a world of poorly run drug distribution, kidnapping, murder, cocaine, biscuits, beloved horses, car batteries, the clergy and a very important chipper. With support from Waterford City and County Council, the play entered Strive Theatre's Play Development Scheme in October 2016 and was premiered in The Central Arts Theatre, Waterford in February, 2017. Since then, the show has toured the country, performing in Cork, Dublin, Listowel, Kenmare, Body & Soul and Electric Picnic before returning to Waterford, this time in Garter Lane as part of The Imagine Arts Festival. Here’s some critical acclaim the original tour received:


'A sparkling comedy that entertains from start to finish. Bizarre and downright insane.' - Pat McEvoy, The Waterford News and Star


'Ape with mayhem and madness...Even when characters are dead, the audience are still laughing.' - Liam Murphy, The Munster Express


'The audience spluttered with laughter at the madcap antics and witty one-liners throughout, and rose to their feet at the curtain call. It had a slightly daft energy that was refreshing and that I particularly enjoyed.'


- Julie Kelleher, Artistic Director of the Everyman Theatre, Cork

2017 National Tour - Original Team


Dez - Alan Mooney

Daz - Patrick Lehane

Boss - Niamh Kavanagh

Fr. Michael - Darragh Keating

Amy O’Brien - Maggie Donovan

The Bishop - Ciarán MacArtain

Creative Team

Director - Al Dalton

Playwright/ Producer/ Sound Design - Conor Clancy

Producer/ LX Design - Ciarán MacArtain

Production Stage Manager - Lovisa Coasgrave

Technical Manager - Rab Urquhart

Costume Design - Tara Laubach

Associate Producer - Hanan Sheedy


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A tragi-comedy in 2 acts


This play written by Sadhbh Moriarty won the Eamon Keane Full Length Play Competition at Listowel Writers’ Week 2015. The drama delves into the cognitive workings of a fragile mind as it endeavours to maintain its nobility through a bizarre and often traumatic landscape. The play is a triumph of humour and friendship safeguarding against the vulnerability of brilliance. 

“New playwright Sadhbh Moriarty trumpets her arrival with her stage play In Light of Salt Rings they Drew - intricate and intriguing and dripping with pain-filled humanity. It is a stunning debut indeed” - Billy Roche

Following the success of the 2015 premiere and original tour, a new production of the play was made for Listowel Writers’ Week 2016. It was also performed at Kenmare’s Carnegie Arts Theatre.


Maisie - Deirdre O’Connell

Ethel - Rosie O’Regan

Alistor - Chris Schmidt-Martin

Mona - Martina Lawton

Mari - Emily O’Mahony

Creative Team

Director/ Concept Design - Ciarán MacArtain

Stage Manager - Laura Perrem

Assistant Director - John Donovan

Production Manager - Shane Vaughan

Technical Manager - Rab Urquhart

Score Writer/ Violinist - Annie Bloch


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A tragi-comedy in 2 acts


Having been admitted to a mental rehabilitation centre for a trial period of assessment, Maisie reluctantly takes up residence in one of the south-facing rooms of St. Elmo's Care Centre. With her daughter in the running for Best Supporting Actress at the annual Irish Film and Television Academy awards Maisie struggles to balance the eccentricity of the patients and staff with her own harrowing anticipation. Alistor’s caretaking career calls for more messing than mopping, while Ethel ambles through St. Elmo’s corridors with determined inclination towards her own strange logic and good quality jumpers. As the award ceremony draws nearer, nicotine cravings, apprehension and scrapbooks dominate Maisie’s temporary surroundings as the ghosts of memories she would rather forget start to re-emerge.

Staged in traverse, In Light of Salt Rings They Drew premiered in The Yoga Room in The Quay Co-op in Cork City in May 2015. Following a period of re-development during the summer, the original company embarked on a National Tour in the Autumn, performing in the Wexford Arts Centre, The Clubhouse in Kilkenny, Spirit of Folk Festival, An Seanchaí in Listowel, Cork’s Granary Theatre, Nun’s Island in Galway and The Complex Arts Centre, Dublin.


Maisie - Nikki Burke

Ethel - Shannon Smythe

Alistor - Conor O’Dwyer

Mona - Eileen Quirke

Mari - Rachel Feeney (tour) Sadhbh McLoughlin (premiere)

Creative Team

Co-Directors - Sadhbh Moriarty and Ciarán MacArtain

Production Manager - Orlaith Clarke (premiere) Laura Murphy (tour)

Stage Manager - Christina Woods (premiere) Jude O’Neill/ Laura Murphy (tour)

Set Design - Martha Hegarty

Lighting Design - Hanan Sheedy

Costume Design - Marissa Anthony-Duricko (premiere) Design Team (tour)

Original Score and Sound Design - Aisling Urwin and Sean O’Sullivan

ASMs - Rhian Wright, Alan Chawke (premiere)

Assistant Production Managers - Keevsa McGrath, Kevin Anthony-Duricko (premiere)


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A drama


Sometimes, life can be hard.

Sometimes, surviving in a sea of societal sameness and banal blandness can make your surroundings seem grey-scale. Why not cast away your troubles and bring colour into your life with beauty, good friends and better booze as it is not the best living but the most living that counts. But above all, make it a good story.

A good love story, if you can manage that. Let any silly consequences work themselves out as everything is alright in the end, and if it’s not alright then it’s not the end!

Set in the party world of Wilhelm, we are propelled through our host’s fantastical lifestyle as he faces challenges from alcohol laws, a gamble-hungry landlord and memories from a past as mysterious as a mixed drink. After a chance encounter with the most wonderful woman he has ever met, it seems that our knight in shining Armani might just have the wits to sustain the colourful routine of his explosive life. But is all as it seems?


Wilhelm – John Treacy
Felicity – Elaine Malone
Theo – Ali Khan
Margot – Megan Roberts
Farther & Mr. Dark – Aaron O'Neill
Ensemble – Brian Bourke, Aoife Marie O'Donnell & Megan Wilmot
Pianist – Aengus Mac a Bhaird
Vocal Actors – Adam Donovan, Sam Knight & Mike Prendeville


Playwright & Director – Martha Hegarty
Assistant Director & Dramaturg – Ciarán MacArtain
Production Manager – Cornelius Dwyer
Stage Manager – Maeve Scannell
ASMs – Adrian McCarthy & Sophie O'Regan
Set & Lighting Design – Hanan Sheedy
Head of Contruction – Colm Clayton
Costume Design – Katy Mullins & Aoife Marie O'Donnell
Make-up – Marta Sagan & Ola Pawlowska
Lighting Op – Tom Keane
Sound Design – Adam Donovan
Music Composition – Arthur Pawsey, Sam Clague & Dairmuit McCarthy
Choreography – Michelle Delea & Sophie O'Regan
PR & Sponsorship Manager – Adrian McCarthy



A devised physical drama


How do different people react in our education system? Can our education system have serious negative pressure on some of our young people? Can people fight against this pressure? To explore this we’ve created a world where everyone must go to monster school.

Going backwards in time, we see Cassandra at the end of monster school, having already gone through the system. The pressure has gotten to Cassandra and she now leads an unfortunate life of the mundane. But how does this happen?


Elaine Malone

Jay Moloney

Katie Melia


Director/ Creator – Hanan Sheedy

Production Manager – Rachael Cronin

Stage Manager – Rhian Wright

Producer & PR – Eimear O’Donavan

Lighting and Set Design – Rob Moloney & Hanan Sheedy

Costume – Martha Hegarty

Music – Conor Clancy

Musicians – Sadhbh Moriarty, John Treacy, Nikki Burke

LX Op – Emma Otten


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A Social Critique


Meet Charlie and Cara Barry, a newly-wed couple expecting their first child. They have recently bought a one-bedroom apartment in Cork’s inner-city, a traditionally working-class area. The powers that be have now re-marketed this Barrack St. locale as “the fashionable inner-city”. The couple’s journey soon illustrates the falsity of such a sales pitch. Charlie works in a bank on and sees first hand the collapse the Irish property market. The clients he deals with day-to-day suffer stresses that exactly mirror his own. His position in the bank sees him “hand out loans that [he] wished he never had touched”. Cara is on maternity leave from a crèche in the western suburbs. She spends money trying to furnish their new home in preparation for the baby. The homely touches she brings are paid for with money that they do not have. Their exorbitant mortgage pushes pressure levels to tipping point. Charlie finds comfort in the friendship he has struck with local Barman, Tom Bradley . The men share a love of literature and through their stimulating discussions and reflections on the world, the dormant artist in Charlie is awakened… Cara enters her third trimester as the pressure mounts, what resolution can be found?

The Rooftops of Paris was the first play produced by Strive Theatre. The original production marked the foundation of the company. A new version of the production then toured to The 2014 Edinburgh Fringe for a 12 show run.

Original Cast

Charlie Barry - Aidan Moriarty

Cara Barry - Paula Weldon

Tom Bradley - Danny Hale

John Bradley - Daithi O’Donnell

Elenor - Aoife Bradley

Chorus - Camille Descouzis, Hubert Sapin Anger, Jennifer Egan

Musician - Michael Jude O’Neill

Voice Of The Guard - Tadhg Dennehy

Original Crew

Playwright/ Director - Ciarán MacArtain

Produced by - Andy Weston

Designed by - Hanan Sheedy

Stage Manager - Laura Gallen

Costumes - Katy Mullins, Vera Stojanovic

Costume Assistant - Roisín MacArtain

Sound Engineer - Rab Urquhart

Assistant Stage Managers - Anna Fenn, Colin Hogan, Gabriella Steinberg

Dramaturg - Gabriella Steinberg

Public Relations Officer - Clare MacGinty

Promotion - Ger Browne (Zenith Media)

Poster Design - Brendan Cotter

Tour Cast

Charlie Barry - Daithi O’Donnell

Cara Barry - Niamh Kavanagh

Tom Bradley - Lochlainn McKenna

John Bradley - Ciarán MacArtain

Tour Crew

Playwright/ Director - Ciarán MacArtain

Production Design - Hanan Sheedy

Production Stage Manager - Elaine Malone

Costume Design/ASM - Roisín MacArtain


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