Melissa Sihra
Assistant Professor, Drama

Biography

Melissa Sihra is Assistant Professor of Drama at Trinity College Dublin. She was President of the Irish Society for Theatre Research (ISTR) from 2011-2015. She researches and teaches in the field of Feminism, gender, Women in Performance, Playwriting, Dramaturgy and Irish Theatre with special interest in the work of Marina Carr and Lady Augusta Gregory. She was Chair of the annual Lady Gregory Autumn Gathering at Gregory's Galway home of Coole Park in September 2016 and gave a day-long workshop on the life and works of Augusta Gregory at The Abbey Theatre as part of their Canon Camp in May 2016. Melissa is a professional Dramaturg and has worked with Holly Hunter on Carr's BY THE BOG OF CATS... at San Jose Repertory Theatre in 2001. She was Dramaturg for the Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre Company's production of Carr's PORTIA COUGHLAN (2001) and the Chicago Irish Repertory's production of BY THE BOG OF CATS...(2001) and Brian Friel's MAKING HISTORY (2002) and G.B. Shaw's JOHN BULL'S OTHER ISLAND (2002) and facilitated a South Korean production of Samuel Beckett's WAITING FOR GODOT at the Samuel Beckett Theatre (2008).She was a consultant for the Abbey Theatre world premiere of Carr's ARIEL (2002), and a Script Reader at the Abbey Theatre (1998-2002). She was invited by Professor Jill Dolan to lecture on Irish Theatre at Princeton University (Autumn 2011), where she also participated in a symposium at the McCarter Theatre, Princeton, in conjunction with the world-premiere of Marina Carr's play PHAEDRA BACKWARDS, directed by Emily Mann. She is a regular speaker at the annual Synge Summer School, and has delivered Keynote Lectures at the University of California, Berkeley, the University of California, Irvine, the University of Pittsburgh, Villanova University, the University of Glasgow and Helsinki University. In 2007 she was chosen to represent Ireland as part of the Next Generation Leaders Program in South Korea, co-funded by South Korean Government and the National Strategy Institute. Prior to working at Trinity College, she was Lecturer in Drama at Queen's University Belfast (2002-2006)and part-time Lecturer in Irish Studies at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth (2000-2002). She was a member of the judging panel of the Dublin Theatre Festival in 1997. She is editor of WOMEN IN IRISH DRAMA: A CENTURY OF AUTHORSHIP AND REPRESENTATION (Palgrave Macmillan 2007) and is currently completing a monograph on the theatre of Marina Carr and recently contributed an essay on Feminism and Women in Irish Theatre to the OXFORD HANDBOOK OF MODERN IRISH THEATRE (2016). Her profile on Marina Carr appeared in THE IRISH TIMES in December 2016 ahead of The Abbey Theatre world-premiere of ANNA KARENINA.

Publications and Further Research Outputs

Peer-Reviewed Publications

12 Entries on Irish Actors, Simon Williams, The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Stage Acting, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2014, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2014

Marie Jones in, editor(s)Maggie Gale and John Deeney , Fifty Modern and Contemporary Dramatists Routledge Key Guides, London, Routledge, 2014, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2014

Marina Carr in, editor(s)Maggie Gale and John Deeney , Fifty Modern and Contemporary Dramatists Routledge Key Guides, (In Press) London, Routledge, 2014, ppIn press - [Melissa] Book Chapter, 2014

Theatre Research International , 36, 3, (2011), 269 - 291p, Elaine Aston, [eds.] Journal, 2011

Melissa Sihra & Pirkko Koski (editors), The Local Meets the Global in Performance, First, England, Canbridge Scholars Publishing, 2010, 1 - 199pp Book, 2010

'A Cautionary Tale: Marina Carr's By the Bog of Cats' in, editor(s)J.P. Harrington , The Norton Anthology of Modern and Contemporary Irish Drama, Second Edition, New York, Norton, 2009, pp582 - 586, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2009

Melissa Sihra (edited with Paul Murphy), The Dreaming Body: Contemporary Irish Theatre, London & New York, Colin Smythe Ltd & Oxford University Press, 2009, 1 - 231pp Book, 2009

Melissa Sihra, The Unbearable Darkness of Being: Marina Carr's Woman and Scarecrow, Irish Theatre International, 1, (1), 2008, p22 - 37 Journal Article, 2008

Melissa Sihra (editor), Women in Irish Drama: A Century of Authorship and Representation, First, United Kingdom, Palgrave Macmillan. Paperback 2009., 2007, i - 241pp Book, 2007

The House of Woman: The Plays of Marina Carr in, editor(s)Melissa Sihra , Women in Irish Drama: A Century of Authorship and Representation, United Kingdom, Palgrave Macmillan, 2007, pp201 - 218, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2007

Greek Myth, Irish Reality: Marina Carr's By the Bog of Cats in, editor(s)Steve Wilmer and John Dillon , Rebel Women: Staging Ancient Greek Drama Today, London, Methuen, 2005, pp115 - 135, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2005

Melissa Sihra, "Nature Noble nor Ignoble": Woman, Family and Home in the Theatre of Marina Carr., Hungarian Journal of English and American Studies, 11, (2), 2005, p133 - 148 Journal Article, 2005

Marina Carr in the US: Perception, Conflict and Culture in Irish Theatre Abroad in, editor(s)Nicholas Grene and Christopher Morash , Irish Theatre on Tour, Dublin, Caryfort Press, 2005, pp179 - 192, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2005

Playing the Body: Marina Carr's Comedy of (Bad) Manners in, editor(s)Eric Weitz , The Power of Laughter: Comedy in Contemporary Irish Theatre, Dublin, Carysfort Press, 2004, pp157 - 172, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2004

Reflections Across Water: New Stages of Performing Carr in, editor(s)Anna McMullan and Cathy Leeney , The Theatre of Marina Carr: before rules was made, Dublin, Carysfort Press, 2003, pp92 - 113, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2003

Melissa Sihra, Renegotiating Landscapes of the Female: Voices, Topographies and Corporealities of Alterity in Marina Carr's Portia Coughlan, Australasian Journal of Theatre Studies, 43, (43), 2003, p16 - 31 Journal Article, 2003

Marina Carr in Conversation with Melissa Sihra in, editor(s)Eamonn Jordan, Lilian Chambers and Ger Fitzgibbon , Theatre Talk: Voices of Irish Theatre Practitioners, Dublin, Carysfort Press, 2001, pp55 - 63, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2001

Olwen Fouere in Conversation with Melissa Sihra in, editor(s)Eamonn Jordan, Lilian Chambers and Ger Fitzgibbon , Theatre Talk: Conversations with Irish Theatre Practitioners, Dublin, Carysfort Press, 2001, pp155 - 165, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2001

A Cautionary Tale: Marina Carr's By the Bog of Cats in, editor(s)Eamonn Jordan , Theatre Stuff: Critical Essays on Contemporary Irish Theatre, Dublin, Carysfort Press, 2000, pp257 - 268, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2000

Non-Peer-Reviewed Publications

Melissa Sihra, Death Aria of the Soul: Program Note for Marina Carr's Woman and Scarecrow, Primecut Productions, Belfast, 2009, - Miscellaneous, 2009

What Lies Beneath in, editor(s)Ali Curran , Operating Theatre 1980-2008, Dublin, Zero-G, 2008, pp70 - 72, [Melissa Sihra] Book Chapter, 2008

Planting Words, Program Note for Brian Friel's Making History, Chicago Irish Repertory Theatre , 2002, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2002

Writing in Blood, Program Note for Marina Carr's Ariel, Abbey Theatre, Abbey Theatre, 2002, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2002

Planting Words, Program Note of Brian Friel's Making History, Chicago Irish Repertory , 2002, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2002

Writing on Water, Program Note for Marina Carr's Portia Coughlan, Pittsburgh Irish and Classical Theatre Company 2001, Progam Note, 2001, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2001

Shifting Landscape, Program Note for Marina Carr's By the Bog of Cats, Chicago Irish Repertory Theatre, John Istel, Stagebill, 2001, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2001

Landscape of Otherness, San Jose Repertory Theatre Subscribers' Newsletter, 2001, [Melissa Sihra] Item in dictionary or encyclopaedia, etc, 2001

Research Expertise

Description

Irish Theatre, Marina Carr, Gender and Feminism in Performance. Playwriting. Dramaturgy.

Keywords

; Irish Theatre, Marina Carr. Irish Playwrights. Women in Performance. Feminism; Lady Gregory; Marina Carr. Augusta Gregory

Recognition

Awards and Honours

South Korea-Europe Next Generation Leaders Program, Seoul, South Korea 2007

Memberships

President of the Irish Society for Theatre Research (ISTR) 2011 – 2015

Member of the International Federation of Theatre Research (IFTR) 2002 – Present

Member of the Irish Association of Studies in Irish Literature (IASIL) 2004 – Present

Member of the Institute of Irish Studies, Queen's University Belfast 2004 – Present