The Gate Theatre has unveiled the cast for the highly-anticipated Irish Premiere of multi-award-winning LGBTQ+ musical Fun Home. Adapted from Alison Bechdel’s acclaimed graphic novel of the same name, the production will show in the Dublin-based venue from July 6 to August 26, with previews during the preceding week.
Earning five Tony Awards, including for Best Musical and Best Original Score, the story follows Bechdel as she confronts long-hidden familial secrets that come to life after the sudden death of her father. Audiences see the protagonist in both past and present forms, with her childhood memories merging with her time as a college student coming out and her adult life as a successful graphic novelist.
Depicting the grown-up version of Alison is Frances McNamee, most recently seen as Elizabeth in Conor McPherson’s Girl from the Country. Playing the college version of the protagonist is Orla Scally, a West Cork native and graduate of the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.
Broadway and West End star Killian Donnelly is another exciting addition to the cast, playing Bruce Bechdel, Alison’s father. The Olivier Award-nominated actor is best known for his leading roles in The Phantom of the Opera, Les Misérables, Kinky Boots and Memphis. Furthermore, he is no stranger to the Gate, having appeared in the theatre’s showing of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.
Alison’s mother and Bruce’s estranged wife, Helen, will be portrayed by Nichola MacEvilly, who also recently featured in Girl from the North Country. Jade Kennedy will play the protagonist’s college girlfriend, while Mark, Pete, Bobby Jeremy and Roy will be played by American College Dublin graduate Riain Cash.
For all of the cast members, excluding Donnelly, Fun Home will serve as their Gate Theatre debuts.
Welcome to the FUN HOME! ???⚰?✏?
⚡ADULT CAST LIST⚡
Killian Donnelly: Bruce Bechdel.
Frances McNamee: Alison.
Orla Scally: Medium Alison.
Nichola MacEvilly: Helen Bechdel.
Jade Kennedy: Joan.
Riain Cash: Roy / Mark / Pete / Bobby Jeremy.https://t.co/68iBoHXQW7 pic.twitter.com/KdSe5KZQI1
— Gate Theatre (@GateTheatreDub) May 5, 2023
The production will be directed by Róisín McBrinn, featuring music composed by Jeanine Tesori and book and lyrics from Lisa Kron. Set design will be by Paul Wills, costume design by Lara Campbell, lighting design by Sinéad McKenna and sound design by Jody Trehy and Jason Fallon. Choreography will be courtesy of Jennifer Rooney, while the musical director of the show is David Hayes.
Speaking about the production, McBrinn said: “We are extremely proud to present the Irish Premiere of Fun Home. Jeanine Tesori and Lisa Kron have crafted an unforgettable work that will resonate with our audiences this summer.
“We are equally excited to work with this exceptional cast and creative team who represent the very best in Irish and international musical theatre talent,” she added.
Tickets for Fun Home at the Gate Theatre are on sale now, starting at €15, excluding booking fee.
© 2023 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.
GCN has been a vital, free-of-charge information service for Ireland’s LGBTQ+ community since 1988.
During this global COVID pandemic, we like many other organisations have been impacted greatly in the way we can do business and produce. This means a temporary pause to our print publication and live events and so now more than ever we need your help to continue providing this community resource digitally.
GCN is a registered charity with a not-for-profit business model and we need your support. If you value having an independent LGBTQ+ media in Ireland, you can help from as little as €1.99 per month. Support Ireland’s free, independent LGBTQ+ media.