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Cast of The Country Boy

The Country Boy By John Murphy


The Country Boy reflects on the social problems of emigration and rural life in the late 1950s.  The Country Boy is a comedy-drama set in the small Irish farmhouse of the Maher family, inhabitants of County Mayo. It tells the story of Curly, 25, who still lives at home with his parents, Tom and Mary Kate. But Curly dreams of following his older brother Eddie to the U.S. in pursuit of success, even if it means leaving his sweetheart, Eileen Tierney. Only upon Eddie's first return home (with wife, Julia) on vacation, are truths revealed of hardship, alcoholism, a troubled marriage, homesickness, and regrets.

Set in a quaint farmhouse kitchen beneath the majestic surrounds of the Nephin Mountain the scene that we are presented with from 1959, could be typical of most rural households in Ireland at the time. The all familiar dresser against the back kitchen wall, the holy pictures, the kettle on the hob, the bread cooling on the window, the bottle of whiskey within easy grasp, are all images that would be fondly remembered by the older members of the audience, and easily related to by younger members of the audience who have seen similar plays, photos and television documentaries with similar scenes.

The Country Boy examines the whole problem of emigration, and the effects it has, not just on those who left the country but also the ones who were left behind. While the play may be full of comedy and humorous genius, beneath the laughs lies the harsh and sad reality of the bitterness, and regrets that emigration has inflicted upon Irish society over the years.

John Murphy who wrote the play, born in Charlestown in 1929, was himself a Country Boy who emigrated to America, but unlike Eddie, Murphy did return, and his experience of characters such as Eddie, provided him with the inspiration to write The Country Boy, a play that delves deeper than any historical facts or figures to give us a real perspective of emigrant and rural Irish life during the late 1950's. 

The Cast

Character: Played By:
Tom Maher John Daly
Mary Kate Maher Mary Neary
Curly Maher Eamonn McNicholas
Eileen Tierney Maria Jordan
Eddie Maher Seamus Beirne
Julia Maher Fiona Campbell

The Crew

Director: Dermot MacMahon
Producer: Vincent McHale
Stage Manager: Emily Connor
Props Manager: Mary Mahon
Sound: Martin Bolger
Lighting: Vincent McHale
Set Construction: Vincent McHale, Noel Mahon, Dermot MacMahon, Des Gilsenan
Set Design: Vincent McHale, Dermot MacMahon & Mary Mahon
Prompters: Nuala O'Hora & Brid Quinn
Hair & Make-Up Marion Daly & Joanne Dean & Brid Quinn
Door: Ann Connor & Sean Kelly
PR: Karen Conway

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