Behind the Scenes

The Lieutenant of Inishmore

cast relaxing on sofa

About the work


Welcome to the Michael Grandage Company’s production of The Lieutenant of Inishmore by Martin McDonagh

MGC Artistic Director Michael Grandage directs a rare revival of Martin McDonagh’s critically acclaimed, brilliant satire on terrorism, The Lieutenant of Inishmore. Stage and screen actor Aidan Turner, best known for playing the title role in the BBC hit series Poldark, plays Mad Padraic, a terrorist deemed too violent to be a member of the IRA, in this hilarious, acute observation of violence in contemporary culture.

Who knocked Mad Padraic’s cat over on a lonely road on the island of Inishmore and was it an accident? He’ll want to know when he gets back from a stint of torture and chip-shop bombing in Northern Ireland: he loves that cat more than life itself.

This production follows Michael Grandage’s award-winning production of McDonagh’s The Cripple of Inishmaan in 2013, and Martin McDonagh’s Golden Globe and BAFTA Award winning film Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.

“MGC was very proud to produce a new West End production of Martin McDonagh’s The Lieutenant of Inishmore in 2018. This brilliant satire is widely believed to be one of the finest comedies ever written about the banality of violence and in particular, terrorism. Set against the backdrop of the Irish troubles, we were able to excavate the highly theatrical juxtaposition of this very dark subject matter alongside what the one reviewer called “one of the madder, braver comedies in recent centuries”.

This document offers an opportunity to go behind the scenes and understand the complexities (mainly technical) surrounding the mounting of a rare, new production.”

Michael Grandage, Artistic Director, MGC 

Inishmore, 1993.

On the remote island of Inishmore, off the west coast of Ireland, the tentative peace process on the mainland seems a long way off… That is until wayward son ‘Mad’ Padraic returns home. Considered too extreme for the Irish Republican Army, he’s taken leave from his newly-formed splinter group to visit his beloved cat, Wee Thomas, who’s seriously injured – the apparent victim of a hit-and-run.

As Padraic’s dad, Donny, in whose care Wee Thomas was left, desperately tries to cover up the accident for fear of his son’s well-known wrath, he blackmails his young neighbour, Davey, into helping him by accusing him of being responsible.

But Padraic’s not the only person to have recently returned to Inishmore. His former colleagues from the Irish National Liberation Army have some differences they’d like to discuss with him…

Will Padraic’s splinter group ultimately prove victorious? Perhaps with the aid of its newest recruit, Davey’s younger sister, Mairead. But can love transcend politics and personal tragedy, especially when adored pets are involved?

DirectorMichael Grandage
Set & Costume DesignerChristopher Oram
Lighting DesignerNeil Austin
Sound DesignerAdam Cork
Wig and Hair DesignerRichard Mawbey
Casting DirectorAnne McNulty
Associate DirectorLynette Linton
Associate DesignerSimon Wells
Associate Casting DirectorRuth O’Dowd
Production ManagerPatrick Molony
Costume SupervisorMary Charlton
Props SupervisorCelia Strainge
Fight DirectorKate Waters
Company & Stage ManagerLorna Cobbold
Deputy Stage ManagerHelen Smith
Assistant Stage ManagerChristopher Carr
Assistant Stage ManagerAshley Mochan
Head of WardrobeTim Gradwell
Deputy Head of WardrobeBen Enathally
Head of Wigs, Hair and MakeupEmily Leonard
Sound OperatorLaura Gingell

The Lieutenant of Inishmore by Martin McDonagh (Bloomsbury, 2018)


Technical Rehearsals