As part of its 2023-2024 Season, The Old Academy Players is proud to present Irish playwright, screenwriter, and director Conor McPherson’s spinetingling tale The Weir. The Old Academy Players’ 539th production will run March 1–17, 2024; Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm, and Sundays at 2 pm. It is presented by special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service.
The Weir opened at the Ambassador Theatre, in Dublin on July 4, 1997. It was supposed to run for four weeks but, due to demand, was extended to nine weeks before moving to the larger theatre, the Duke of York’s, in St Martin’s Lane, where it continued to play there for the next two years. Reviewers wrote: “A spellbinder that transfixes you…No praise in fact is too high…THE WEIR offers the most exciting evening in theatrical London.” —Guardian. “With bewitching fluency allied with a gift for locating the greatest emotions in the smallest details, and a faultless ear for idiom, McPherson achieves something remarkable.” —Times Literary Supplement (London). “The writing is rich, vivid and often wonderfully funny…A distinctive talent to cherish.” —London Telegraph. The Weir won the Laurence Olivier Award for Best New Play of 1997–98. In addition, McPherson won the Critics' Circle Award as the most promising playwright in 1998 as a direct result of the success of The Weir.
Synopsis: In a bar in a remote part of western Ireland, three middle aged lads and the pub’s landlord are swapping spooky stories. They do their best to impress Valerie, an attractive young woman recently arrived from Dublin. What begins as a simple visit to the local pub soon turns out to be an evening of both funny and spell-binding stories. The final tale, told by Valerie herself, takes a strange and unexpected twist. The mood of the evening changes and marks a significant shift among the chemistry of the group.
Content Warning: The Weir contains adult themes and adult language not suitable for young children. Viewer discretion is advised.
The stellar cast includes: Lauren Kirchner as Valerie, Norman Burnosky III as Brendan, Ryan Kirchner as Finbar Mack, Stephen Negro as Jack, and Vail Gualtieri as Jim. Terri Bateman serves as Assistant Director/Producer. At last Christopher Wunder, having directed the successful Old Academy Players’ production of Outside Mullingar (2016), returns to the boards to direct The Weir. Chris has been an actor, stage manager, lighting operator and producer as well. Some shows to his credit include: Gypsy, Fiddler on the Roof, Hotel d’Amour, Carnival, The Mousetrap, Fools, Beau Jest, Here on the Flight Path, Bad Seed, Move Over Mrs. Markham, Doubt, and Rabbit Hole.
Ticket prices are: $20 per adult; $10 for Students under 25 with valid ID; group rate (15 or more) $17 each. Tickets can be purchased online at www.OldAcademyPlayers.org. Reservations and more information can be obtained by calling the Box Office at 215-843-1109. Old Academy Players is located at 3544 Indian Queen Lane, Philadelphia, PA 19129. Parking for all performances is free.
The Old Academy Players has provided continuous community theater entertainment since 1923 and is a non-profit community theater in East Falls neighborhood of Philadelphia. Constructed in 1819, the Old Academy building has been the OAP home since 1932. Old Academy Players is a member of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance. Most notable alumni include Tony Award-nominated actor Robert Prosky and Hollywood icon, Grace Kelly. Support is provided by the "Philadelphia Cultural Fund".