Black comedy to bring death and drama to Oldham Coliseum

Quentin Tarantino meets Father Ted in BAFTA and Academy Award-winning Martin McDonagh’s black comedy A Skull in Connemara.

The show comes to Oldham Coliseum on Friday, February 22 – Saturday March 5, directed by Chris Lawson and designed by Katie Scott.

In a rural town on the west coast of Ireland Mick Dowd sits in his cottage sipping poteen. Mick has the unfortunate occupation of exhuming bodies from Connemara graveyard to make space for new residents and this year his late wife is on the list of people to evict.

Una died under mysterious circumstances some seven years ago. What’s more mysterious, however, is that when Mick digs into her grave and opens her coffin there’s nothing there…

Martin McDonagh’s subversive style has been regularly compared to Quentin Tarantino. He is best known for feature films: In Bruges, Seven Psychopaths and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

A Skull in Connemara is the second of his much celebrated Leenane Trilogy of plays, flanked by The Beauty Queen of Leenane, which had a hit run at the Coliseum in 2009 with London Classic Theatre’s visiting production, and The Lonesome West.

The Coliseum’s production is directed by Chris Lawson, who became Acting Artistic Director in December 2018.

He commented: “A Skull in Connemara uses both dark comedy and drama to show how people can be a product of their environment and community.

“The play presents the audience with a puzzle that I hope everyone will try and solve in their own way. It raises issues about morality, sense of self and the impact of rumours versus fact.

“I’m proud we have brought the words of such a great playwright to the doorstep of Oldham”.

The cast features John O’Dowd, who was last in Oldham with English Touring Theatre’s The Weir which won the Manchester Theatre Award for Best Visiting Production; Jenny Lee, who was nominated for an Olivier Award in 2017 for It’s Easy to be Dead at Trafalgar Studios; Griffin Stevens, who was last in Manchester for HOME’s productions of Inkheart and Romeo and Juliet; and Liam Heslin, who was last in Manchester for the immersive On Corporation Street.

• A Skull in Connemara runs from Friday 22 February – Saturday 9 March 2019 at Oldham Coliseum Theatre. Tickets can be booked by calling the Box Office on 0161 624 2829 or online:

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