The Weir

Play by Conor McPherson. In a remote Irish bar, Valerie finds herself spending an evening with the local bachelors, listening to spooky, haunting yarns about restless ghosts and superstitions. But as they desperately try to win her affections, their boasts are matched by their pints and they try to outdo each other with their story-telling. But then the men discover that Valerie has her own tale to tell... and its a tale so haunting and beautiful that it is destined to change their lives for ever.

Original West End London Production 1997

1st West End London Revival 2013

Conor McPherson's other West End plays include Girl From the North Country at the Old Vic Theatre in 2017, at the Noel Coward Theatre in 2018, and at the Gielgud Theatre in 2019; Port Authority at the Ambassadors Theatre in 2001; and Dublin Carol at the Old Vic Theatre and the Royal Court Theatre in 2000.


Original West End London Production 1997

Previewed 3 July 1997, Opened 8 July 1997, Closed 23 August 1997 at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs (at the Ambassadors Theatre)
Previewed 18 February 1998, Opened 23 February 1998, Closed 18 April 1998 at the Royal Court Theatre Downstairs (at the Duke of York's Theatre)
Previewed 8 October 1998, Opened 12 October 1998, Closed 27 May 2000 at the Duke of York's Theatre

The cast from Thursday 3 July 1997 to Saturday 23 August 1997 featured Kieran Ahern as 'Jim', Brendan Coyle as 'Brendan', Julia Ford as 'Valerie', Gerald Horan as 'Finbar', and Jim Norton as 'Jack'.

The cast from Wednesday 18 February 1998 to Saturday 18 April 1998 featured Kieran Ahern as 'Jim', Brendan Coyle as 'Brendan', Julia Ford as 'Valerie', Des McAleer as 'Finbar', and Jim Norton as 'Jack'.

The cast from Thursday 8 October 1998 to Saturday 27 February 1999 featured Kieran Ahern as 'Jim', Brendan Coyle as 'Brendan', Michelle Fairley as 'Valerie', Dermot Crowley as 'Finbar', and Jim Norton as 'Jack'.

The cast from Monday 1 March 1999 to Saturday 25 September 1999 featured Tony Rohr as 'Jim', Sean Gleeson as 'Brendan', Cathy White as 'Valerie', Stanley Townsend as 'Finbar', and Niall Buggy as 'Jack' (up to Saturday 12 June 1999), Tom Hickey as 'Jack' (from Monday 14 June 1999).

The cast from Monday 27 September 1999 to Saturday 27 May 2000 featured Anthony O'Donnell as 'Jim', Daniel Flynn as 'Brendan', Ruth Gemmel as 'Valerie', Miles Anderson as 'Finbar', and Karl Johnson as 'Jack'.

Directed by Ian Rickson, with designs by Rae Smith, lighting by Paule Constable, music by Stephen Warbeck, and sound by Paul Arditti.

The Royal Court Theatre used the Ambassadors Theatre as a 'temporary' small theatre, and the Duke of York's Theatre as a 'temporary' larger theatre while their home in Sloane Sqaure was being refurbished.


1st West End London Revival 2013

Previewed 18 April 2013, Opened 25 April 2013, Closed 8 June 2013 at the Donmar Warehouse
Previewed 16 January 2014, Opened 22 January 2014, Closed 19 April 2014 at the Wyndham's Theatre

A major revival of Conor McPherson's play The Weir in London starring Brian Cox, Ardal O'Hanlon and Dervla Kirwan

The cast at London's Donmar Warehouse and the West End's Wyndham's Theatre featured Ardal O'Hanlon as 'Jim', Peter McDonald as 'Brendan', Dervla Kirwan as 'Valerie', Risteard Cooper as 'Finbar', and Brian Cox as 'Jack'.

Directed by Josie Rouke, with designs by Tom Scutt, lighting by Neil Austin, and sound by Ian Dickinson.

Brian Cox's London theatre credits include playing the roles of 'Max' in Trevor Nunn's production of Tom Stoppard's Rock'n'Roll at the Royal Court Theatre, and transfer to the Duke of York's Theatre in 2006; 'John' in Ian Rickson's production of Conor McPherson's Dublin Carol at the Old Vic Theatre (stage) and transfer to the Royal Court Theatre in 2000; 'Harold Hill' Ian Talbot's revival of Meredith Wilson's The Music Man at the Open Air Theatre in Regent's Park in 1995; 'Petruchio' in Jonathan Miller's revival of William Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, for the Royal Shakespeare Company, at the RSC Barbican Theatre in 1988; 'Eilert Lovborg' in Anthony Page's revival of Henrik Ibsen's Hedda Gabler at the Royal Court Theatre in 1972; and 'Orlando' in Peter Dews' revival of William Shakespeare's As You Like It, for the Birmingham Repertory Theatre Company, at the Vaudeville Theatre in 1967.

Ardal O'Hanlon's West End theatre credits include playing the role of 'Francois Pignon' in Robin Lefevre's production of Francis Veber's See You Next Tuesday, adapted from Le Diner De Cons by Ronald Harwood, at the Albery Theatre in 2003.

Peter McDonald's West End stage credits include the roles of 'Aston' in Christopher Morahan's revival of Harold Pinter's The Caretaker at the Trafalgar Studios in 2010; 'Michael' in Anna Mackmin's revival of Brian Friel's Dancing at Lughnasa at the Old Vic Theatre in 2009; 'Stanley' in Robert Altman's production of Arthur Miller's Resurrection Blues at the Old Vic Theatre in 2006; and 'Padraic' in Wilson Milam's production of Martin McDonagh's The Lieutenant Of Inishmore at the Garrick Theatre in 2002.

"Such was its power when it opened at the tiny upstairs theatre at the Royal Court in 1997 that it transferred to the main stage downstairs, then into the West End and on to Broadway, scooping numerous awards on its way. Without a doubt Josie Rourke's revival reconfirms the play's status as a contemporary classic, but it's subtly different... This production is lighter than the original in every sense. The sadness of lives unspent and mouldering away, empty and loveless, in this bleak and blokeish backwater, haunted by ghosts and squandered opportunities, is punctuated by more laughter than before. And it is balanced by the possibility of finding solace from the comfort of strangers, as well as old mates. The performances are as exquisitely nuanced as the writing, but Brian Cox's lonely and yet ever generous-spirited Jack, with his terrible dyed hair, who's first thought every day is of the woman he loved and lost, steals the show." The Mail on Sunday

"Josie Rourke's casting is perfect. Jack the mechanic is Brian Cox, a great bluff blackbeetle of a man; Peter McDonald is Brendan, ineffectually morose; lanky Risteárd Cooper in a white suit, Finbar, and the enchanting Ardal O'Hanlon - Father Ted's divinely-dim Dougal - is Jim: soft as his woolly sweater, with a gift for tactless bathos in solemn moments. And Valerie is Dervla Kirwan, with her beautiful broad-browed Madonna face and capacity to transcend ordinariness... Conor McPherson's comic gift for bathos is never cheap, but serves the absurd truth that, without scorn or denial, the worst things sometimes briefly become jokes. As others reveal themselves, a particular description of a barman making a sandwich long ago becomes one of the most cathartic moments in theatre. It pays homage to the consoling human connection which alone can save us, and which turn up in the oddest places." The Times

Brian Cox, who play 'Jack' in this revival says about Conor McPherson: "There's nobody like him of that generation, as far as I'm concerned. I don't enjoy a lot of the theatre but Conor is always a good gig - it's like working with a great master. Apart from Tom Stoppard's Rock'n'Roll and a couple of forays in New York, [McPherson's] St Nicholas and Dublin Carol were really my last connection with what I've felt I should be doing as an actor. I felt I needed to go back and work in the theatre and this was the perfect play. It's a play I knew - I was very impressed by the original production - so I was a bit nervous about it. It's a tough play to do - probably the toughest of his plays."

The Weir in London at the Wyndham's Theatre previewed from 16 January 2014, opened on 22 January 2014 and closed on 19 April 2014.