Cripple of Inishmaan press release

More fun than staring at cows.
nimbus to stage "The Cripple of Inishmaan"

November 19, 2012


The year is 1934, and Hollywood is coming to the little island of Inishmore off the west coast of Ireland. A famous director is determined to make a movie about life in the Aran Islands, and Billy Claven, a dreamer from the neighboring island of Inishmaan, is determined to be in the film and take his shot at fortune and fame. But “Cripple Billy’s” audacity may be a stretch for the secret-hoarding, gossip-loving locals. Award-winning playwright Martin McDonagh gives us a cast of Irish characters whose language is at once beautiful and caustic, whose hearts can be as large as the sea and as stony as the islands themselves.


McDonagh, the son of Irish parents, grew up in London and remained there with his brother Jim when his parents returned to Ireland. He left school at 16, and before the breakout success of The Beauty Queen of Leenane in 1997, he had 22 radio scripts rejected by the BBC. With early influences that included Orson Welles, Martin Scorcese and David Lynch, it is little wonder that some of his most famous works have earned him the title “master of gory Irish gothic.” Despite his London address, he is considered one of the most important living Irish playwrights.


Director Kari Hammer has long been a fan of McDonagh’s work. Other plays include The Pillowman, The Lieutenant of Inishmore, and The Lonesome West. She cites his knack for capturing language and stories that run the gamut of human emotion. She declares The Cripple of Inishmaannimbus-worthy,’ as McDonagh “twists the worlds he creates, turns them on end and scatters their insides onto the floor.” A recent trip to the Aran Islands further whetted her appetite for the piece, as she met the captivating residents and experienced the harsh beauty of the islands firsthand. Hammer asserts it is the rich characters and the music of their language that drive the play, and that by the end, though we may live in a news-saturated, instant celebrity culture, the foibles and secret desires of the isolated community of Inishmaan are not so different from our own.


nimbus continues to grow into its new home on Central Avenue. Since moving into the new space, they have presented works by Genet (The Balcony), Georg Buchner (Woyzeck), Joan Didion (The Year of Magical Thinking), Babel (an original script by Josh Cragun), and most recently Kurt Vonnegut’s Happy Birthday, Wanda June.



a play by Martin McDonagh

Directed by Kari Hammer


Featuring Katie Adducci, Karen Bix, Eric Cohen, Seth Conover, Mark Groberski, Jane Hammill, Andrew Newman, Adam Scarpello, and Jean Shore. Designed by Ursula K. Bowden, Jacob M. Davis, Andrea M Gross, Sarah Holmberg, and Liz Neerland.


performances at Nimbus Theatre

1517 Central Ave NE

Minneapolis, MN 55413


Tickets: 612-548-1380



nimbus has been producing interesting, experimental and challenging theatre in the Twin Cities since 2001. Presenting an engaging mix of under-appreciated works by established playwrights, new plays by emerging playwrights and innovative company-created productions, nimbus asks audiences, collaborators and conspirators to question ideas, emotions and easy answers. In February of 2011, they took up residence in their new permanent home at 1517 Central Ave NE.

For more information email Josh Cragun or Liz Neerland at