Oscar Wilde and Micheál MacLiammóir help to fundraise for the Rothe House Renaissance Project.




A unique link is being revived between Rothe House and Micheál MacLiammóir this month, with a performance of his play ‘The Importance of Being Oscar’ at Kyteler’s Inn on 31st of January at 8 pm ( with pre-show reception at Rothe House at 7 pm).

The eloquent actor, stage designer, wit and playwright, wrote his tribute to Oscar Wilde in 1960 and performed it in New York and London as well as Dublin.  This piece is now being presented by Banba’s Crown Theatre Company, in an informal setting at Kyteler’s Inn, as part of the fundraising campaign for the Renaissance Project at Rothe House.

Michael Judd, of Banba’s Crown, has had a long relationship with ‘The Importance of Being Oscar’:


“From the first reading, I felt an affinity for Micheál MacLiammóir’s beautifully written tribute to Oscar Wilde. I first performed excerpts from it in March 1997 in Soho, New York, as part of a festival of Irish Culture.  I went on to work on other projects over the years, but always felt a desire to revisit this play and explore it more fully.

In 2012, my wife Sinéad and I re-established “Banba’s Crown”, a Production Company which we started in New York City to adapt and revive older Irish works.  We began work on adapting “The Importance of Being Oscar” with a view to presenting it to modern audiences. We both had a sense that it would be more interesting to present the work in diverse settings other than conventional theatres. Since then, our journey has taken us to some unexpected and remarkable spaces! “

– Michael Judd


Micheál MacLiammóir is well remembered for his outstanding performance at Rothe House in 1968, when he was invited to visit during the filming of ‘Lock Up Your Daughters’.  In an extract from Maureen Hegarty’s memoir of that visit, she suggested that ‘he come back later and give us a night?’ And he did.  In November 1968, he performed ‘I Must Be Talking to My Friends’ in the stunning Phelan Room, which was packed to the rafters. Maureen’s amusing account of that night is captured forever in the 2010 Old Kilkenny Review – the Journal of Kilkenny Archaeological Society.

This charming account will be recited on the 31st January, at a pre-show reception to be held at Rothe House.

Tickets for this event are €15 (€20 to include the pre-show reception and recitation), and are available at Rothe House, by telephoning 056 7722893, emailing reception@rothehouse.com, or calling in.

All proceeds from the night go to the Renaissance Project at Rothe House (www.rothehousefundraising.com).