If you have any feedback on how we can make our new website better please do contact us and we would like to hear from you.


Liam is an established freelance theatre director and actor based in Ireland.

He has received numerous awards from the Irish Arts Council to develop his work over the past 15 years. 

Liam by Tom Lawlor 2013

He contributes as a part-time lecturer to the:-

MA in Drama & Performance at UCD 

BA (Hons) in Theatre & Drama Studies for CIT at the Cork School of Music.

Short Biography

After training as an actor at the Stanislavski Studio at the Focus Theatre Dublin Liam worked with internationally renowned directors such as Lindsay Anderson, Sir Hugh Hunt, Declan Donnellan (Cheek By Jowl), Phyllida Lloyd, James Macdonald and Annie Castledine.


He has performed with companies as diverse as the Abbey Theatre, Oxford Stage Company, Cheek By Jowl, Birmingham Rep, Theatr Clwyd, Manchester Contact, English Dance Theatre, Torifune Butoh Sha and Gay Sweatshop. His films include the Irish classics Pigs by Cathal Black and Anne Devlin by Pat Murphy. He played Peter Dubois in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and he will soon be seen playing a leading role in Banshee Blacktop by the writer/director Sean Garland (due for release later in 2015).  

Liam interviewing Colm Toibín for The Next Stage Dublin 2012.

Liam's directorial work has been funded and supported by:-

The Arts Council

Dublin City Council

EU Peace & Reconciliation Fund

The Gulbenkian Foundation & The British Council

The Civic Theatre, Draíocht Arts Centre, Garage Theatre 

 Fingal, Monaghan and Westmeath County Councils & Midland Health Board.

His work is eclectic, ranging from...


a devised piece like Cracked looking at the lives of women in mental asylums in 1950's/60's Ireland...

'A vibrant and powerful piece. This is exemplary and innovative stuff.'            Sunday Times

Photo: Diane O'Keeffe, Liz Keller, Dawn Fleming by Hannah Smolenska


to his own adaptation for four actors of

The Turn of the Screw which toured nationally... 

'A truly memorable work...a superb production and a riveting adaptation.'           Irish Examiner       



Photo: Ruth McGill by Toshi Sakauchi


to a site specific A Midsummer Night's Dream in co-production with the Irish Chamber Orchestra co-directed with Lawrence Evans...

'A high energy production delivering hit by hit.'                                                              Irish Times

Photo: Mark Fitzgerald, Brian Bennett by Maurice Gunning


to numerous new plays e.g. in 2014 On City Water Hill by Philip St John at Theatre Upstairs; The Importance of Being Honest by Billie Traynor at Bewley's Cafe Theatre; The Belle Bottoms by Eoin Colfer for Dublin Fringe Festival in Smock Alley Theatre; and in 2015 Have a Heart by Seamus Moran and Language of the Mute by Jack Harte both at Dublin's New Theatre.

'This is an important play and deserves serious objective consideration.' Irish Independent

'Not to be missed!'     Daily Mail

Poster with Pat Nolan & Neill Fleming designed by Beata Barylka


Nominated for an Irish Times Theatre Award as Best Director for...

SIT_1_copySpeaking in Tongues by Andrew Bovell  

for Quare Hawks Theatre Company.

'There can be no doubt about the strength of Bovell’s creative imagination. The four actors bring clarity and depth. Liam Halligan’s direction is fluent and sharply etched, against Marcus Costello flexible design.'          

The Irish Times on Speaking in Tongues

Noelle Brown & Karl O'Neill by Toshi Sakauchi

Rashomon for Storytellers Theatre Company RASHOMON

based on two stories by Ryunosuke Akutagawa.

‘A savage drama. For seventy-five minutes a hypnotic stage creation unfolds. The original music by Denis Clohessy adds a haunting dimension. This is new ground for Storytellers and they have harvested it with profit.’    

The Irish Times on Rashomon

Emma Colohan, Malachy McKenna, Eoin Lynch by Toshi Sakauchi


BANSHEE BLACKTOP: An Irish Ghost Story

a new film written and directed by Sean Garland

Banshee_Blacktop_posterLiam plays one of the central roles in this beautiful and unsettling Irish film.

There was a private screening in The Prince Charles Cinema, Leicester Square, London on 12th April which received an extremely positive reaction. The film will receive a screening for distributors in Soho House London later this month. There will be a private screening  at the Irish Film Institute on Saturday 27th June.

You can see a trailer on www.bansheeblacktop.com

Cast also includes Kelly McAuley, Dylan Kennedy, Frank O'Sullivan and Marcus Lamb.

Far left: Kelly McAuley & Liam

Photo: Conrad Gibbons

Far Left: Kelley and L


Just finished at the New Theatre....


by Jack Harte

'This is an important play' Sunday Independent

'It bravely tackles subjects that some would rather not acknowledge'

The Public Reviews

'It cuts to the heart' Sunday Independent

This is a controversial and dynamic new play by the much loved Irish novelist Jack Harte. It was supported by the Irish Writer's Centre and produced by Jack Gilligan and Ann Russell.

The production had a sold out run for two weeks which finished on 5th September 2015.

Cast: Aoife Moore, Matthew O'Brien, Marc McCabe and Michael O'Sullivan

Set and Lighting design: Eoin Lennon

Costumes: Liz Tierney

Assistant Director: Barry McSkeane


Currently on tour....

The Importance of Being Honest

by Billie Traynor

This production was revived from last year by Bewley's Café Theatre at Powerscourt for a five week run this summer.

The cast is Billie Traynor, Deirdre Monaghan and Karl O'Neill.

It is currently on tour and will play in The Civic Theatre from 5th - 10th October. It will also tour to Dunamaise Port Laoise and to the Garage Theatre Monaghan.

Two of Oscar Wilde's favourite characters, Gwendolen and Cecily from The Importance of Being Earnest, meet after 20 years in 1913....

'A wise play in an entirely delightful production by Liam Halligan.'     Sunday Independent

'In Wilde's play the social commentary is secondary to the entertainment, Traynor balances them equally.'                                                                                           The Sunday Times

'Liam Halligan's direction works fabulously. Traynor and Brown's onstage chemistry is unshakeable'.                                                                                          The Public Reviews

'What Traynor offers is a wonderful piece, bright and breezy. A wonderfully pleasant way to spend an hour in the theatre. It is delivered finely by the cast and deftly directed by Liam Halligan.'                                                                                                 Red Curtain Review

Here are some photos from the original production last summer....


Photos: L to R Billie Traynor, Noelle Brown and Eamon Rohan by Toshi Sakauchi


'An engaging proposition...Traynor deploys expected witticisms but her true intention is more serious. Liam Halligan's production follows that artful inversion to reveal a poignant picture of lives in stasis.'     

 Irish Times

Cecily_dancing_smallSet: Eoin Lennon    

Lighting: Colm Maher 

Costumes: Helen Connolly

Sound: Eamonn Murphy

Producer: Bewley's Cafe Theatre  

Photos: Toshi Sakauchi

Funded by the Irish Arts Council


Also this summer...

Back in July at The New Theatre Liam directed the first production of a play by Canada's most prolific and popular playwright...



by George F. Walker

Liam has directed the European Premiere of this fierce and darkly funny play.

George F. Walker was awarded the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award in 2009, along with Robert Lepage. This is Canada's highest honour.

'It's great fun.' Sunday Independent

'In a word: brilliant.' Red Curtain Review

'Under the direction of Liam Halligan Risk Everything is consistent throughout. There are rare moments when there is no audible laugher, which is testament to the performances'                                                                                                                                               The Public Review

Cast: Pat Nolan, Ann Russell, Neill Fleming and Teri Fitzgerald. 

Set Design: Maree Kearns                                                        Lighting design: Eoin Lennon

Sound design: Eamonn Murphy                                               Producer: Melissa Nolan from Mouths On Fire.


At the Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2015...


written and performed by Seamus Moran

'Seamus Moran's one man show is a comic dramatisation of organ memory with a distinct thriller vibe. Energetically directed by Liam Halligan. The female characters are great fun. The plot stays ahead of the audience and it is testimony to Moran's talent that he manages to pull it all off.'                                                                    The Sunday Times


Directed  by Liam Halligan

Soundscape by Denis Clohessy

Set & Lighting design by Marcus Costello


Two Publications in 2014:


Mushroom, a play by Paul Meade, commissioned and produced by Liam in 2007, has been published by Cork University Press in a volume of new plays called Staging Intercultural Ireland.

The volume includes plays by Donal O'Kelly, Ursula Rani Sarma, Rosaleen McDonagh and Mirjana Rendulic.

There is an excellent introduction to the play by Jason King from the University of Limerick. 

Tenderfoot, a volume of plays by and for young people.

It contains 16 short new plays all written by 15/16 year olds over the past 8 years on the Tenderfoot programme at the Civic Theatre Dublin. The volume is published by South Dublin Libraries & Arts and The Civic Theatre.

Just completed....

The Tenderfoot Project  
 at the Garage Theatre Monaghan until 24th April 2015.

A selection of plays written by twenty teenagers from the local area received staged readings in the Garage Theatre on Thursday 23rd and Friday 24th April.

See link to Video from The Irish Times about Tenderfoot at the Civic Theatre earlier this year...



This was the 8th year of our apprenticeship programme for young theatre makers presented by The Civic Theatre, South Dublin County Council with the help of a Young Ensemble Award from the Arts Council.

This was an opportunity for transition year students to learn the basics of theatre making. 

Approximately 40 young people, drawn from seven secondary schools throughout the South Dublin region, worked with Liam, Veronica Coburn and Gavin Kostick.


The group wrote, performed, designed and stage managed their own work for 4 public performances in the Civic Theatre in January 2015.

Left: Hayleigh McGowan rehearsing I Remember by Ola Kusiak

Photo: Peter Kelly


Recent productions....

The Belle Bottoms by Eoin Colfer

played at the Wexford Opera Festival in the Spiegeltent in October last year and completely sold out.

It opened at the Tiger Dublin Fringe Festival 2014 at Smock Alley Theatre.

Two ladies sing songs of restraining orders, gay brothers, spermy young fellas and growing up in the 1970's.  There will be flares, there will be attitude, there will be glitterballs!

With Sharon Clancy and Aileen Mythen

Lyrics by Eoin Colfer

Compositions by Bressie, Heathers, Eleanor McEvoy and many others.

Musical Direction by Liam Bates

Lighting by Mark Galione

'Sharon Clancy and Aileen Mythen bring a sassy presence and formidable vocals...'                                                                                                       The Irish Times

**** 4.5 stars 'An hilarious one hour disco delight.'                  The Public Reviews

'The reliably inventive Eoin Colfer...the Belle Bottoms could yet reach the top!'                                                                                                            The Irish Times

'Highly entertaining...a spectacular show.'                                           The Public Reviews


Other recent work...

A Kurt Weill Cabaret

with Lisa Sadovy and Walter van Dijk for The Soundings Festival in May 2015 at the Nasher Sculpture Centre, Dallas, Texas, USA

Originally compiled and directed by Liam Halligan.

Now directed by the wonderful Laurence Evans.



On City Water Hill by Philip St John

at Theatre Upstairs, Burgh Quay, Dublin 2. May 2014

With Pat Nolan and Neill Fleming.  Designed by visual artist Laura Kelly.

**** 'Not to be missed' Irish Mail of Sunday   

'Fleming and Nolan are a powerful combination'  Daily Mail 


Pat Nolan and Neill Fleming by Beata Barylka


Gaiety School of Acting full time students rehearsing their Shakespeare scene presentation November 2014 directed by Liam...


Left: Gordan Quigley & Aurelia Grierson.

Centre: Larry Wilson & Ian Dunn. Right: Madeleine O'Carroll & Diana Melo.

Photos by Tom Maher courtesy of the GSA 2014.


Work in 2013...

Scabs by Naomi Elster
at Theatre Upstairs, Eden Quay Dublin.

Scabs_3This is a new play by a first time writer directed by Liam celebrating the centenary of the 1913 Lockout.

'Elster's first play crackles with fiercely help moral and political arguments....a lively and gripping production.' 
Irish Independent

'There's a passion and eloquence in Naomi Elster's play. 
It has great life.' 

Sunday Independent

Photo: Rob Harrington, Aine de Siun by Toshi Sakauchi

'Scabs is insidious. It's infectious. So let the message spread.'     Le Cool


Mary Stuart by Freidrich Schiller

The Freemasons Hall, Molesworth Street, Dublin 2 for Pageant Wagon Theatre Company
August 2013.

Irish Mail
4 stars! Show Of The Week.

xxxx 4 stars! 

Adapted and Directed by Liam Halligan

Lighting Design by Ciarán O'Melia
Costumes by Sinéad Cuthbert
Music by Pierpaolo Vitale

Supported by Dublin City Council with production support from Rough Magic Theatre Company.

Bess_2This was a sell out site specific production, in one of Dublin's most extraordinary venues. It offered a remarkable setting for this wonderful European classic.  


Photos by Toshi Sakauchi: From top - Christiane O'Mahony as Mary, Aenne Barr as Elizabeth, Neill Fleming as Burleigh.

With a cast of ten actors and one musician we created an urgent, contemporary piece of theatre, played in traverse, creating an atmosphere of intimate intensity.

'A ripping political thriller played out on the chessboard-like patterned carpet floor of the Freemasons' Hall.  Fascinating how contemporary it really is. 
Sinéad Cuthbert's exquisite costume collection...the action is perfectly measured by Halligan, as the room drops silent with tension. This glamorous and chilling production is a discovery of a powerful play in a mysterious venue.''

Irish Theatre Magazine

'You feel like a spectator at a 16th century trial. This is a riveting piece of poetic drama, splendidly translated, full of dramatic twists and turns. PAGEANT WAGON deserve praise for bringing us another chance to see what a fine dramatist Schiller was.'
 Irish Mail on Sunday

'A fresh and vibrant production...Aenne Barr's portrayal of the ruler is subtle and nuanced, Christiane O'Mahony's portrayal of Mary Stuart is as tender as it is strong. Impressive, still, is the pipe organ, played by Pierpaolo Vitale.'


Town & Country
by Gary Duggan

Smock Alley Theatre 7.30 25th to 30th June 2013

Liam directed Gary Duggan's two new plays Town & Country for this year's Gaiety School of Acting graduates.

Gary saw this as an opportunity to experiment, partly returning to earlier elements of his work but also to try some new things.

Each play tells a separate, self-contained story. When viewed together several parallels in terms of theme and references are apparent. 

This was the graduating production for the final year students at the Gaiety School of Acting - National Theatre School of Ireland.

ck Alley June 2013. 



Far left: Teri Fitzgerald, Rex Ryan, Ashleigh Dorrell in Town

Left: Katie McCann, Clodagh Mooney Duggan in Country


Collaborations 13 Festival
Smock Alley Theatre Dublin
Feb/March 2013

Frame_1bThe Sylvia 
by Philip St John

Directed by Liam Halligan
Designed by Marcus Costello


With Anna Shiels McNamee, John Delaney, Gillian McCarthy and Matthew Ralli. 

Photo: Anna Shiels McNamee by Maciej Staroniewicz




'Philip St John's drama is an exploration of  the uneasy relationship between the viewer and the viewed, the slippery politics of exploitation, and the shifting value placed on constructed images. St John makes this argument compelling, and works to offer an additional critique by linking the ups and downs of the value of art, body and image to the fluidities of economic exchange and valuation in the midst of the recent financial crash. In broad
strokes, his narrative is cleverly constructed as a diptych, where the second half offers us a mirror image of the first, but with inverted positions of
power and privilege. Director Liam Halligan has worked well with his actors in shaping St John's pithy dialogue, the texture of which recalls the sly menace of Harold Pinter or Philip Ridley.'

Irish Theatre Magazine

Matthew-Ralli-and-Anna-Sheils-McNamee'The Sylvia is a new attractive and elegantly constructed play by playwright Philip St John. Structured in two acts that mirror and oppose each other, at times dramatic, at times hilarious, The Sylvia delivers. The dialogues are rapid and witty and the staging, although minimalistic, is effective. The two main protagonists, Barry (Delaney) and Sylvia (McNamee) are excellent throughout. McNamee's rendering of the complexities of a character like Sylvia is impressive. The audience is constantly challenged and amused. The Sylvia is
a brave reflection on our society and its hidden obsessions.

   IT Magazine


Back in 2012 Liam was...

Artist-in-Residence at Draíocht Arts Centre


Photo by Tom Lawlor
Nov. 2012

See promo of the final performances in Draíocht Arts Centre...

Supported by Fingal County Council and the Arts Council.

There was great interest in the project with over a hundred initial enquiries. 

Liam created an hour long devised piece of theatre with 60 people from the local area.

The final piece, You Yes You,  became a political cabaret performed on the main stage of Draiocht Arts Centre for 2 performances at the end of November 2012. We received very good audiences and the piece had an excellent response.

Director and Designer: Liam Halligan
Lighting Design: Marcus Costello
Music: Tom Lane


Liam in rehearsal with 85 year old Mary Yeats who remembered the bombings in the North Strand during the 2nd World War.

'I just want to say that the last year being involved in Liam Halligan's community project was amazing, and something I won't forget in a hurry. After our first meeting I knew I wanted to be involved to the very end. The community feeling was amazing. No one held back, which I think was largely due to Liam being such an open person. I would recommend anyone to look into any of the future projects that Draiocht or Liam have, because honestly it is one of the best things you will ever sign yourself up to, even if I was sick with nerves before each performance.'
Patrice Sheridan, December 2012

Holy Mary by Eoin Colfer

Produced by Wexford Arts Centre and Bewley's Cafe Theatre.

Supported by an Arts Council Touring Grant
Holy Mary looks at the world from an eight year old's point of view as she prepares for the pivotel moment of her first Holy Communion.

Photo: Iseult Golden and Aileen Mythen by Arex Wnuk

Aileen Mythen plays Mary
Iseult Golden plays everyone else.

The production features sound and music composed by the award winning composer Denis Clohessy with set and lighting designed by Marcus Costello and costumes by Helen Connolly. 

Eoin Colfer is a New York Times best-selling author especially known for his extraordinary Artemis Fowl series.

'Eoin Colfer's new play is funny, endearing and clever. Both Mythen and Golden deliver standout performances. Worthy of Roald Dahl, this is unalloyed enjoyment.'                      
The Sunday Times 

'Mythen is a great testimony to the power of live theatre. On stage her acting is captivating. Golden is versatility personified. Under Liam Halligan's direction both actors maintain a hectic pace of narrative and an energetic flow of action. Denis Clohessy contributes a haunting soundscape.'                                                                                                                     Irish Theatre Magazine

'Humour and pathos aplenty!'                                                                                                   The Irish Times

'Exuberant engaging performances under Liam Halligan's expert direction.                     **** The Metro

'Both women are delightful...beautifully encapsulated' 
Sunday Independent

See promo here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ltQKCYCnAgY


Photos: Iseult Golden & Aileen Mythen by Toshi Sakauchi

The show opened in Wexford Arts Centre in August 2011 and toured to the Kilkenny Arts Festival, Garter Lane Arts Centre in Waterford and to Conary Community Hall near Avoca in Co.Wicklow. 

The show played for 3 packed weeks in Bewley's Cafe Theatre in Dublin. 


 Other work in 2011...

Toxic by Michelle Reid
at Project Arts Centre 
June/ July 2011

Liam directed this terrific new play by Michelle Reid.  It is a full length play specially commissioned for this year's 18 graduating GSA students.

Set & Lighting by Marcus Costello. Sound Design by Karl Kennedy. Costumes by Helen Connolly.

Photos of cast by Toshi Sakauchi 2011

Michelle sees the play as a reflection on what the younger generation are in for in deepest recessionary Ireland.

Photo of Stuart Conlon and Caoimhe O'Malley by Toshi Sakauchi 2011

This was a dynamic, inventive and hard hitting production which received excellent houses and a number of standing ovations.Toxic-33

Stuart Conlon, Alicja Ayres, Tiernan Kearns by Toshi Sakauchi 2011



Synopsis of other work...

SIT_UNA_2_copyLiam has developed a reputation for creating visually striking pieces of theatre with strong vibrant performances based on adaptations or verbatim text i.e. Cracked (Hannah Greely), Rashomon (Ryunosuke Akutagawa), Dream of a Summer Day (Lafcadio Hearn), The Turn of the Screw (Henry James).

Una Kavanagh in 'Speaking in Tongues'



Colin O'Donoghue in 'Leaving'

Below: Ruth McGill in The Turn of the Screw

Liam is also known for his work on new writing, directing world premieres by Ioanna Anderson, Ken Bourke, Mary Elizabeth Burke Kennedy, Eoin Colfer, Gary Duggan, Helena Enright, Jack Harte, John Kavanagh, Gavin Kostick, Michael McCudden, Barry McKinley, Paul Meade, Philip Osment, Philip St John, Colin Teevan and Lally Katz.

Ruth McGill in 'The Turn of the Screw'

Liam was delighted to workshop Eithne McGuinness's (RIP) wonderful play 

One Hundred Strokes at the Abbey Theatre.



Fall_1A scene from 'The Dream of a Summer Day' based on the life and work of Lafcadio Hearn

Liam has directed classical works by Goldoni (Galloglass), Eugene O'Neill (Focus), Shakespeare (Storytellers/Irish Chamber Orchestra), Oscar Wilde (Galloglass), W. B. Yeats (Derby Playhouse) and Freidrich Schiller (Freemason's Hall).




Above left: Helen Delaney & Chris Patrick Simpson in The Turn of the Screw Storytellers 2007   Photo: Tohi Sakauchi

Far right: Brian Bennett in A Midsummer Night's Dream Storytellers/ICO 2008      Photo: Maurice Gunning

Gaiety School of Acting - National Theatre School of Ireland...

Toxic-92Liam is a guest acting tutor at the GSA in Dublin. This is the oldest established professional actor training programme available in Ireland. 

He introduces the final year students to Shakespearean text.

Another_Twin-26Laura Flynn and Laura McGuire in Another Twin

y Katz


Liam's past students include: Ian Lloyd Anderson, Sarah Green Caoilfhionn Dunne, Carl Kennedy, Marcus Lamb, Jane McGrath, Clare Monnelly, Charlie Murphy, Jamie O'Neill, Paul Reid and Aidan Turner. 


National University of Ireland Dublin:

liam_at_manifestoOver the past four years Liam has facilitated practical workshops on theatre direction for the MA in Drama Studies utilizing texts by Beckett and Ibsen.


External Examiner

Liam is delighted to be an external examiner for drama students at the Cork School of Music. It is always inspiring and encouraging to meet so many passionate and energetic students.


Recent Workshops...

In The Body
Liam attended this very exciting 3 day practice based symposium which was a collaboration between the RSC, the University of Kent and the Moscow Art Theatre School.

The symposium was the culmination of a 2 year Leverhulme funded project to exchange understandings and observe different approaches to movement training for actors.

Movement workshops were lead by Andrei Droznin (Master Teacher of Movement Vakhtangov Theatre Moscow), Natalia Federova (Movement Teacher Moscow Art Theatre School), Struan Leslie (Head of Movement RSC) and Niamh Dowling (Head of School of Theatre Manchester Metropolitan University).

Michael Chekhov Workshops


Photo by Scott Burrell by courtesy of  MICHA 2010.

Liam received Arts Council awards to take part in two Michael Chekhov training workshops with the Michael Chekhov Association from New York.


Windsor group of actors, teachers and directors. Joanna Merlin and Ted Pugh are seated centre.

Liam's first Chekhov workshop was aimed specifically at Drama Teachers and was hosted by NUI Galway.

This was a week long workshop and the facilitators were Joanna Merlin and Fern Sloan.

Joanna is the only surviving pupil of Michael Chekhov who is still teaching.

The second 8 day workshop was hosted by the University of Windsor Ontario which houses the Micheal Chekhov Archive and was open to the participants. Here is a quote from a speech Chekhov made in January 1939 at the opening of his new school in Connecticut...


'There is a disharmony in our age because we are already dead to the higher level. So in our school we must try to awaken these dreams about another kind of people who are strong and flaming and cold as ice and storming.'

Getting a bit carried away..? Photo by Scott Burrell by courtesy of  MICHA 2010.

See a short film by Ragnar Freidank on the Michael Chekhov week in Windsor...



  Site Map