The lives of two men unravel quickly over the course of ninety minutes. Where are they? Who are they? What is this room, and what might be beyond the walls?
Gut-wrenchingly funny and achingly sad, with jaw-dropping moments of physical comedy, ‘Ballyturk’ is an ambitious, profound and tender work from Enda Walsh, in a co-production between Landmark Productions and Galway International Arts Festival.
It stars internationally-acclaimed actors Cillian Murphy, Mikel Murfi (Walsh’s longtime collaborator) and Stephen Rea as three nameless men, trapped in a room. Murphy previously appeared in a sensational solo performance in Walsh’s ‘Misterman’, which premiered at GIAF in 2011 and scooped two Irish Times Theatre Awards, with Murphy taking Best Actor and Jamie Vartan Best Set Design. Reuniting the creative team responsible for ‘Misterman’, sets and costumes are designed by Jamie Vartan and lighting design is by Adam Silverman. Sound design is by Helen Atkinson, with original music composed by Teho Teardo.
‘Ballyturk’ premiered at Galway International Arts Festival 2014 in the Black Box Theatre, and became the fastest selling show in GIAF history. “You won’t quickly forget the experience”, said the New York Times in its review. “A richly theatrical experience… impeccably acted” commented The Guardian, while The Irish Times dubbed it as “dark and giddily disturbing.” Festival audiences also left the theatre with high praise, calling it “playful and dark”, “mind-blowing” and “very intense.”
The play went on to tour in Dublin and Cork, before hitting the National Theatre in London for a five-week season.
In 2015, Ballyturk scooped two Irish Times Theatre Awards for Best Production and Sound Design.