Mother of all the Behans

Rosaleen Image 1Mar 18 – 29

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Performed by Rosaleen Linehan

Adapted by Peter Sheridan
From the book by Brian Behan
Directed by Caroline Fitzgerald
Produced by Patrick Talbot Productions

 Tickets: €15
Bookings: 087-1129970


Patrick Talbot Productions


Rosaleen Linehan


Mother of all the Behans

Adapted by Peter Sheridan

From the book by Brian Behan

Directed by Caroline Fitzgerald

To mark the 50th Anniversary of the death of Brendan Behan Patrick Talbot Productions presents the first major revival of Mother of all the Behans, featuring one of Ireland’s foremost actresses: Rosaleen Linehan.

A richly textured portrait of Kathleen Behan, one of the most remarkable Irish women of the 20th Century, Mother of all the Behans was acclaimed when first produced at the Abbey Theatre in 1987. It subsequently toured to London, the Edinburgh Festival and New York.

‘Rosaleen Linehan’s interpretation is quite superb. It is a subtle and hugely compelling piece of acting worth going a long way to see’ The Guardian


Kathleen Behan was a unique character who lived through stirring times in Irish history and raised one of Ireland’s famous families.

Born in 1889, she spent most of her early life in an orphanage, but this had no dampening effect on her indomitable spirit. She took part in the Rising of 1916 and remained a committed Republican all her life. She was very proud of being a socialist and communist. ‘I’m not red, I’m scarlet’, she used say.

What makes her so appealing to me is her enormous sense of fun and her extraordinary repertoire of songs, some of which were recorded by RTE and on vinyl.

She married twice. Her first husband, Jack Furlong, died in 1918, leaving her with two sons, Rory and Sean. With her second husband, Stephen Behan, she had five children: Brendan, Brian, Dominic, Seamus and Carmel. The first three were writers, social activists and song writers.

Brendan became a world-famous playwright and novelist. Kathleen was devastated by his death fifty years ago this year. It is this anniversary which is inspiring the revival of this portrait of her ebullient life.

Rosaleen Linehan.


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