"Mr McDonagh is destined to be one of the theatrical luminaries of the 21st century" (The New Republic) In 1934, the people of Inishman learn that the Hollywood director Robert Flaherty is coming to the neighbouring island to film his documentary Man of Aran. No-one is more excited than Cripple Billy, an unloved boy whose chief occupation has been gazing at cows and yearning for a girl who wants no part of him. For Billy is determined to cross the sea and audition for the Yank. And as news of his audacity ripples thorugh his rumour-starved community, The Cripple of Inishmaan becomes a merciless portrayal of a world so comically cramped and mean-spirited that hope is an affront to its order. With this bleak yet uproariously funny play, the young Anglo-Irish dramatist Martin McDonagh fulfills the promise of his award-winning The Beauty Queen of Leenane while confirming his place in a tradition that extends from Synge to O'Casey and Brendan Behan.
Martin McDonagh's first play The Beauty Queen of Leenane was the 1996 winner of the George Devine Award, won the Writer's Guild Award for Best Fringe Play and the Evening Standard Award for Most Promising Newcomer. The play was nominated for six Tony awards, of which it won four, and the Laurence Olivier Award.