Welcome to Rough Magic

Rough Magic is a multi-award winning national theatre company. Since 1984 we have produced 140 productions - many of them Irish and world premieres. Independent, artist-led, and inherently collaborative, Rough Magic exists at an unexpected angle to the mainstream, providing an anchor for independent artists, and rich theatrical experiences for audiences across the country and the world.

Founded in Dublin in 1984, Rough Magic is a national, independent theatre company that delivers a comprehensive programme of new Irish writing, reimagined classics and contemporary international plays to audiences across Ireland and beyond. Our work is expansive, playful, and – whatever its form – focused on the moment.

Operating as an ensemble across the spectrum of scale and style, our programme offers fresh perspectives, engaging the audience with the qualities that define us: wit, subversion, intellectual rigour, and free artistic expression.

Guided by these core values Rough Magic has consolidated as a dynamic creative entity and a valued institution, with a portfolio of 140 productions, including 44 World Premieres. Our values are articulated in the way we work; and our commitment to equality of representation and diversity of expression.

The company has been a pioneer in mentoring and support. We believe in artist development, showcasing and platforming theatre makers at all stages of their career, prioritising trust in our colleagues and collaborators, supporting them to take artistic risks.

Over four decades Rough Magic has established a vital presence in Dublin and across Ireland. Our working model is based on strong relationships – with venue partners, co-producers, and co-presenters, nationally and internationally – reflecting the company’s resilience and adaptability.

Awards include: a record number four Irish Times Irish Theatre Awards for Best Production (Copenhagen 2003, Improbable Frequency 2005, The Taming of the Shrew 2007, Don Carlos 2009); London Time Out Award; two Edinburgh Fringe First Awards and the Irish Times Irish Theatre Award for Best Ensemble for A Midsummer Night’s Dream in 2018. Most recently Rough Magic’s production of Solar Bones was awarded Best Actor for Stanley Townsend and Best Director for Lynne Parker at the Irish Times Irish Theatre Awards.

Our work is brought to you by the Rough Magic team led by Artistic Director Lynne Parker.

Latest News

Freefalling at Lime Tree Theatre

We are over the moon to announce that Freefalling, Georgina Miller’s extraordinary one woman show, is coming back! Playing at Lime Tree Theatre on 26-27 September, 8pm – book now at this link. ★★★★ – The Irish Times ★★★★ – The Guardian Imagine you’re travelling the world – You’re jumping out of planes, diving with … Continued

What's On

What Are You Afraid Of? at Kilkenny Arts Festival

We are thrilled to share the news that Rough Magic will present a work in progress showing of Peter Hanly’s new play What Are You Afraid Of? in Kilkenny Arts Festival. Rough Magic has a longstanding relationship with both Peter and the Kilkenny Arts Festival, and we’re delighted to be part of this wonderful programme. Perhaps … Continued

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New Associate Director

Rough Magic is delighted to announce the appointment of Dominic O’Brien as our new Associate Director. One of the rising stars of Irish theatre, Dominic is a graduate of SEEDS and joins the team as we begin our 40th anniversary year. Dominic follows the stellar line of Associates, beginning with Tom Creed, followed by Matt Torney, … Continued

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Praise for

Rough Magic

Core Pillars

Independent and Collaborative

Unique in personality, generous in approach, connected across the sector

Artist-led and Audience-focused

A partnership between the creative ensemble and the engaged audience to celebrate the collective experience of live theatre

Constant and Regenerative

Using our core principles over four decades to respond to the moment and replenish both the company and the sector

Playful and Rigorous

Expansive and playful, taking our work seriously but not ourselves – combining a sense of purpose with an instinct for fun