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Patricia Burke Brogan is a painter, poet and playwright. Her etchings have won awards at Barcelona and at Listowel International Biennale 1982. Her first poetry collection, Above the Waves Calligraphy, was published by Salmon Publishing in 1994.
Her play Eclipsed has won many awards including a Fringe First at Edinburgh Theatre Festival 1992 and the USA Moss Hart Award 1994. To date there have been 61 productions of Eclipsed on three continents. Stained Glass at Samhain and Eclipsed have been translated into Italian. Eclipsed has also been translated into French and Dutch.
Eclipsed has been excerpted in documentaries and other collected works including The Field Day Anthology of Irish Writing, Volumes 4 and 5. Irish Women Playwrights of the Twentieth Century. Ireland 's Women: Writings Past and Present. Motherhood in Ireland . Repositories of Secrecy and Shame; Magdalen Laundries and Ireland's Architecture of Containment. Sacred Play: Soul Journeys in Contemporary Irish Theatre: Druids, Dudes and Beauty Queens:The Changing Face of Irish Theatre. Laundry Basket Hearts: Visions and Revisions of the Magdalene Laundries in the Drama of Patricia Burke Brogan. Theatre Journal 1999 and in Amnesty International Magazine 2002.
Clarenda's Mirror, a three-
Patricia Burke Brogan's plays have always seemed a little ahead of their time. Her 1992 Eclipsed was one of the first attempts to expose the abuse of women in the Magdelene laundries and, 10 years later, she courageously called for a more balanced view of Ireland's Catholic past in Stained Glass at Samhain.
Requiem of Love is more personal and retrospective than either of those works, focusing on a man's attempts to come to terms with the death of his estranged wife. But although Burke Brogan is exploring new territory here, the moral generosity and painterly sensibility of her earlier plays remain evident.
John O’Kelly stands at the graveside of his wife Nora. He’d left her many years before, after being accused of a death for which he may have been responsible. Nora was left alone to raise their children; O'Kelly brawled his way drunkenly through Australia, sobering up on Good Friday each year to write her letters he never sent. Instead he carries them around, wrapped in an Irish tricolour.
Burke Brogan presents to us a man whose life has been ruined largely because of his own weaknesses -
Requiem of Love therefore manages to be rich without being dense. It draws on a range of allusions to song, visual art, the natural world, and other cultures' funeral rituals, but never loses narrative impetus .... the script’s haunting tone .... creates a strong, lingering contrast between O'Kelly's hopeless situation and the beauty of the language used to describe it.
Patrick Lonergan, Irish Times
Requiem of Love:A Monologue for stage
by Patricia Burke Brogan
RRP €10.00 ISBN 0-