The Mai


Marina Carr

Published by Dramatists Play Service

1 Male 7 Female

An accomplished, beautiful forty-year-old woman, The Mai has always sought an exceptional life. Robert, her cellist husband, has always felt stifled by The Mai's ideals of perfection

After seventeen years he leaves her, whereupon she sets about building a dream house in the hope that he will one day return to her. From her fairytale castle, The Mai waits by the window for her dark-haired prince to return

Set in the inspiring surrounds of the West of Ireland, on the banks of the legendary Owl Lake, we enter this world on the day of Robert's return after an absence of four years. In the midst of Mai's and Robert's troubled reunion are the idiosyncratic characters that comprise the family

Irreverent and unapologetic, the opium-smoking one-hundred-year -old matriarch, Grandma Fraochlan, presides over all. The "Spanish Beauty," as she is known, with her "ancient and fantastical memory" and mythical presence, reminds us that the past is looming ever present

Her daughters, Agnes and Julie, meddle in the affairs of their three nieces, with comical tenacity. Deeply theatrical and profoundly intense, THE MAI is an epic tale of love and loss, of elusive dreams shattered by vulgar but inescapable reality

"The writing is at once gentle and raucous capable of articulating deep-seated woes and resentments in a manner you rarely find outside Eugene O'Neill" ~ Observer

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