Macnas to bring the legend of Gilgamesh to Galway

Macnas to bring the legend of Gilgamesh to Galway

Masters of storytelling and spectacle Macnas will bring a dramatic new interpretation of the world’s oldest story, the legend of Gilgamesh, to Galway this year.

Commissioned by Galway 2020 for the European Capital of Culture celebrations, the extraordinary adventures of Gilgamesh will start to unfold online at from September.

The legend of Gilgamesh is the world’s first ever hero’s journey, an epic tale which follows a young king called Gilgamesh who embarks upon a quest to seek answers to humanity’s fundamental questions about love, power, death and immortality.

Macnas will elevate its signature imaginative style, taking traditional theatre and storytelling into new outdoor, indoor and digital territories across three phases into 2021, bringing the contemporary themes of this ancient origin story to life.

“This is an amazing story about the dance of humanity, our loves, our losses, our challenges and our hopes. Gilgamesh is epic and Macnas does epic so get ready people… Gilgamesh is coming,” said Macnas Artistic Director Noeline Kavanagh.

The world of Gilgamesh will begin to reveal itself to local, national and international audiences from September on digital platforms, via and across Macnas socials, introducing the story and firmly rooting the world of the characters in the city and landscape of Galway.

In December, the magic of Macnas will see Gilgamesh journey outside the city into the wild landscape of County Galway for a very special one-off ticketed event in a rural location.

In March 2021, Macnas moves indoors as Gilgamesh, reimagined by  award-winning Irish playwright Marina Carrtakes possession of the Black Box Theatre for an innovative, fierce and fantastical season (16-28 March) that will take the audience far beyond the four walls of the theatre.

With Gilgamesh Macnas is working with a team of new and existing artists and collaborators to bring this ancient story to life.

Celebrated playwright Marina Carr is joined by Tony Award-nominated designer Julian Crouch, associate designer Orla Clogher and costume designer Cherie White, with music and soundscapes from composer and sound designer Nick Powell.

As part of the project, the company will also implement a major digital programme on

The Gilgamesh Experience will reveal original creative content over the coming months to include a series of specially commissioned short films from cinematographer Colm Hogan, allowing the work to be experienced by a truly global audience.

“Macnas is a formidable company that has always been exciting and ambitious, pushing the boundaries of theatre and storytelling,” said Galway 2020 CEO Patricia Philbin.

Gilgamesh is a project which challenges these possibilities even further, working in a new way and exploring new platforms.

We are excited to see it unfold across Galway and online. Audiences are in for a treat.”


image credit: Colm Hogan