Best Theatre (Nominee) – Dunedin Fringe Festival, 2018
Outstanding Visiting Production (Nominee) – Dunedin Theatre Awards 2018
Written and performed by Laura Irish
Directed by Vanessa Wells
Laura Irish (NZ/USA) weaves between her own unusual story of parenthood & the ancient Greek tragedy, Medea. Heartwarming, hilarious & heart-wrenching. “The entire audience was so enthralled by her magnetic storytelling we quite literally heard a pin drop from the set behind her.” – Backstage Reviews NZ
Medea the Mother is an exploration of the universal plights and expectations of parenthood that we still face today and cheekily asks the bold question of society, “so… what’s changed and what still needs to change?”
431 BC: Medea, warrior Barbarian princess, falls in love with the famous Jason after saving his life and assisting him in acquiring the Golden Fleece. She is swept away to an unaccepting new world far from home to start a family with the man she loves. After their passionate union, Jason coldly fades from her and announces his engagement to a new younger woman. He turns his back on Medea and their children as they are exiled to accommodate his pending marriage. The Barbarian and the Betrayer face off in a destructive battle of pride, passion and revenge culminating in the unspeakable.
Modern day: Laura Irish is facing her own obstacles with motherhood while traveling the world and is bringing her story back to the United States for the first time after touring in it New Zealand. Labels, fears, hilarious mishaps with toddlers and even addressing the odd pressure of society to reproduce at all, and what if it happens by accident…
Laura Irish is an award-winning actress, improviser and playwright with a penchant for investigating villains. She is a classically trained actress, having studied Viewpoints, Suzuki Method of Actors Training, Meisner and Stanislavski in New Zealand and Shakespeare in NYC at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting. She is one of the founders and the Artistic Director of the Nelson Fringe Festival and former AD of The People’s Republic of Improv in Nelson, New Zealand, one of the organisers of Nelson Summer Shakespeare and the NZ Improv Fest. Laura has a BA in Communication: Theatre & English from Greenville University and a Master of Arts Management from AUT. Laura grew up in small town, Illinois, but has lived in New Zealand for more than a decade after living in South Korea and the UK.
Her most recent stage roles include: Mercutio and Lady Capulet (R+J directed by Giles Burton), Bonnie Parker (Hot Chocolate and the Trail’s End, A Story of Bonnie & Clyde, written by Laura Irish, directed by Daniel Allan), Lady Macbeth (Macbeth, directed by Lisa Allan, Adelaide Fringe), Cecily Cardew (The Importance of Being Earnest, directed by Lisa Allan) , Robin Goodfellow – A Puck (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, directed by Giles Burton), Viola (Twelfth Night, directed by Giles Burton) and Myrrha (Metamorphoses, directed by Daniel Allan) and a million other characters built on the stages of improv. Laura also has various television, film and commercial credits from New Zealand.