Welcome to Rough Magic

Rough Magic is a multi-award winning national theatre company. Since 1984 we have produced over 138 shows - 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 139 productions, including 43 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

Children of the Sun by Hilary Fannin at the Abbey Theatre

As part of Rough Magic’s 40th anniversary celebrations in 2024, we are delighted to announce that we will be bringing Hilary Fannin’s radical adaptation of Maxim Gorky’s Children of the Sun to audiences in an exciting co-production with the Abbey Theatre. Fannin’s version of Gorky’s dark comedy will travel from the original text and setting … Continued


SEEDS 2023

We are delighted to announce the SEEDS participants for 2023/2024. HK Ní Shioradáin Sound Designer HK Ní Shioradáin is a multidisciplinary artist from Dublin. They compose, sound design, and music direct for film and theatre, and are a bilingual spoken word poet, performing in Irish and English. They have a BA in English Literature and … 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