In the Shadow of the Glen

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In the Shadow of the Glen is a one-act play by J.M. Synge (1871-1909)[1].

Also known as The Shadow of the Glen

The original text

Set in an isolated cottage in County Wicklow in what was then the present day (c. 1903), the play

It was the first of Synge's plays to be performed on stage, opening at the Molesworth Hall, Dublin, on October 8, 1903.

Published in Collected Plays by John M. Synge (Harmondsworth: Penguin Books) in 1952.

Translations and adaptations

Ugandan playwright Erisa Kironde's English play The Trick[2] is based on Synge's play, transposing the action to an African setting.

A free Afrikaans translation and radical adaptation of Synge's work called Onder die Brandberg (lit: "Under the burnt mountain"), was done by Temple Hauptfleisch (1945-) in the late 1970s, turning it into a full-length play and transferring the time to the 1970s and the setting to an isolated farm the Karoo. Though performed in 1980/81, the text is unpublished.

Performance history in South Africa

1976: Performed as part of a double bill of plays by J.M. Synge (along with Riders to the Sea), directed by Beth Dickerson in April 1976, featuring Ian Roberts and others.

1980/81: Onder die Brandberg, the Afrikaans adaptation, performed in the Pretoria Kleinteater by students of the Pretoria Teachers' Training College, directed by Thea de Kock.


Photographs of scenes from the play held by NELM.

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