Enda Walsh’s Medicine will have its American premiere at St. Ann’s Warehouse this fall. Starring in the Brooklyn production will be Domhnall Gleeson, Clare Barrett, Aoife Duffin, and percussionist Seán Carpio.
Medicine, a co-production with Landmark Productions and Galway International Arts Festival, will run November 11–December 5. The play debuted at the Edinburgh International Festival, where it continues through August 29, and will play at Galway International Arts Festival September 2–18.
The play follows John Kane, who is undergoing treatment with two attendants (both named Mary) as they replay trauma from John’s life both before and during his years-long institutionalization. Walsh penned the absurdist work after coming across accounts of abuse in psychiatric institutions and watching his mother’s experience with Alzheimer’s in a retirement home.
“It’s about the absence of love—and our longing and great need for love,” says Walsh. “The characters are tied to structure and rules and ways of living that have twisted them into dysfunctional isolated souls. But knitted through the play, I hope, is a call for understanding and listening—and with that, our responsibility to care properly for one another and particularly for those who are vulnerable.”
Serving on the creative team are set designer Jamie Vartan, lighting designer Adam Silverman, composer Teho Teardo, costume designer Joan O’Clery, and sound designer Helen Atkinson. Cathy, Belton, Zara Devlin, Seán McGinley, Aaron Monaghan, Mikel Murfi, Tadhg Murphy, and Marty Rea provide vocal talent to create a surround sound environment.
Medicine will be the ninth production written or directed by Walsh to play St. Ann’s, after The Walworth Farce, The New Electric Ballroom, Penelope, Misterman, The Last Hotel, Arlington, Ballyturk, and Grief Is the Thing with Feathers. The playwright won the Best Book of a Musical Tony Award in 2012 for Once.