Celebrating the life and works of the most famous Irish American playwright

We are delighted to host the second Eugene O’Neill International
Festival of Theatre, which will take place in New Ross, Co Wexford
from the 9th to the 13th of October, 2019.

Eugene O’Neill’s father James was born in Tinneranny, Co. Kilkenny in
1845, and emigrated as a small boy with his family from New Ross in
1851. James became one of America’s most promising Shakespearean
actors. However, haunted by the terrible poverty of his youth, James
compromised his talent for financial security, playing the title role
in the potboiler The Count of Monte Cristo thousands of times.

James’ son Eugene O’Neill, recoiling from the melodramatic style his
father personified, created modern American drama. The only American
playwright to win the Nobel Prize and also four Pulitzer Prizes,
Eugene was apparently a spent force when he retired to Tao House in
Danville, California in 1937. His privacy fiercely protected by his
wife Carlotta, Eugene then wrote four of America’s greatest plays. In
one of them, Long Days Journey Into Night, “written in tears and
blood” and posthumously produced, Eugene finally made his peace with

At Tao House in Danville in September and at St Michael’s Theatre in
New Ross in October, in a partnership we call “One Festival, Two
Countries”, we invite you to join us in celebrating both James and
Eugene O’Neill, united at last in their adopted and ancestral countries.


Sean Reidy, Chairman,
The O’Neill Ancestral Trust,
New Ross,
County Wexford,




Dan McGovern, President,
Eugene O’Neill Foundation,
Tao House, Danville,