Big wins for Galway shows at theatre awards

The Galway Arts Festival production of Enda Walsh’s Misterman and Druid’s staging of John B Keane’s Big Maggie were the main winners at the recent Irish Times Theatre Awards.

Between them the two shows scooped three awards, including Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor. The awards ceremony took place at Dublin’s Royal Hospital Kilmainham.

The Galway Arts Festival and Landmark’s co-production of Misterman won two awards on the night with the Best Actor accolade going to Cillian Murphy and Jamie Vartan taking Best Set Design.

Accepting the award for Best Actor, Cillian Murphy thanked the Galway Arts Festival and Landmark Productions for the “wonderful experience” he had during the making of Misterman. He also paid tribute to his friend and playwright Enda Walsh.

“I only have two words for this really: Enda Walsh,” he said. “Fifteen years ago he gifted me a career with his play Disco Pigs and 15 years later he gifted me the part of Thomas Magill in Misterman.”

Galway Arts Festival chief executive, John Crumlish said: “All of us at the Festival are delighted with Cillian and Jamie’s win. The Misterman journey has been a very exciting one for Galway Arts Festival and we look forward to its opening at the National Theatre in London in April.”

The other Galway win came via John Olohan, who received the Best Supporting Actor Award for his role as Byrne in Druid’s production of Big Maggie.

Garry Hynes, the play’s director, said: “John is one of Ireland’s finest actors and a wonderful company member. All of us here at Druid congratulate him on his award and we’re looking forward to having him back in the fold soon again for DruidMurphy.”

John Olohan previously worked with Druid on its productions of The Playboy of the Western World and The Silver Tassie. He returns to work with the company in the coming weeks on the DruidMurphy - Plays by Tom Murphy project.

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