O'Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance
The O'Donoghue Centre is a new performance facility in what was once the IMI Building adjacent to the College Bar and the Bailey Allen Hall. It features a new theatre of 120 seats, with state of the art sound, lighting and digital equipment. There are also three studio spaces for teaching and rehearsals; a workshop for set-building; dressing rooms, classrooms and storage space. These facilities allow NUI Galway to provide teaching in the most modern facilities in any Irish University.
The Centre is possible thanks to the generosity of Dr Donagh O'Donoghue and his family. A graduate of NUI Galway Dr O'Donoghue continues his inspiring legacy by supporting the Centre for Drama, Theatre and performance. His vision allows NUI Galway to build and develop its strengths in drama, theatre and film studies and a broad understanding of performance generally. This truly has a transformative effect not only on our students but on the vibrant cultural hinterland that surrounds the campus.
The O'Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance will deliver ground-breaking programmes of a kind unavailable elsewhere in Ireland or internationally, firmly rooted in local strengths and capacities, but globally significant in vision, ambition and innovation.
Drama and Theatre at NUI Galway have a distinguished history, with major directors, actors, playwrights and producers emerging from the university over the years. The opening of the new O'Donoghue Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance - supported by Galway University Foundation - will preserve that legacy - but it will also open up exciting new opportunities.
Research in Drama has been greatly strengthened by the university's investment in major theatre archives supported by Galway University Foundation. These include the papers of playwrights Thomas Kilroy,(Link to Archives/Thomas Kilroy) John Arden and Margaretta D'Arcy; of companies including Druid (Link to Druid), the Lyric, Galway Arts Festival and Macnas; and of the actors Arthur Shields and Siobhan McKenna. But perhaps its greatest innovation in this area has been in the use of technology to digitise the archives of the Abbey Theatre (Link to Archives/Abbey Theatre) and the Gate. With over 2 million items including scripts, videos, photographs, and administration records, these resources make NUI Galway the home of the world's largest digital theatre archive.
These activities are strengthened by partnerships with professional theatre companies. In particular, Galway University Foundation supports Drama in a partnership with Druid Theatre Company (link to Druid), whose Tony-Award winning co-founders Marie Mullen and Garry Hynes are graduates of the University. (link to famous alumni)