Stewart Parker Retrospective

Queen's University host a series of talks, readings and performances dedicated to the acclaimed Belfast playwright

Saturday, November 2 marks the 25th anniversary of Stewart Parker's passing. A scholar, poet, playwright, and music critic, Parker was a founding member of the Belfast Group and wrote extensively for stage, radio and screen.

Parker was a student and teacher at Queen’s University and was involved, with great distinction, in campus life through his work in Dramsoc and a diverse range of student publications.

Like JM Synge, he was cut down at a tragically young age whilst at his height of his powers, but he left a body of work that establishes him as the most innovative and important playwright to have emerged from Belfast, and one of Ireland's greatest 20th century scribes.

Queen's University Drama, with the kind support of BBC Northern Ireland and Literary Belfast, are set to host a retrospective of Stewart’s work for stage, radio and screen from October  28 to November 2. All events are free and open to the public.

As part of the retrospective, QUB’s School of Creative Arts will introduce the Annual Stewart Parker Memorial Lecture in honour of Stewart's artistic achievement, which will be delivered on November 2 by the renowned actor for stage and screen, Stephen Rea, a long-time close friend and collaborator of Parker's.

An exhibition of photos of Parker, his friends and city will be displayed throughout the week in the foyer of Queen's Film Theatre, which will also screen a BBC Northern Ireland television adaptation of Parker's acclaimed play, Pentecost.

There will also be performances of Pratt's Fall by Queen's University drama students, a performance of Sanctuary by Theatre of Witness, and listening events of Parker's radio plays Iceberg, I'm a Dreamer Montreal and The Traveller.

Tickets for all lunchtime QFT screenings and evening readings in the Brian Friel Theatre will be issued at the door, though visitors are strongly advised to book tickets for the Stewart Parker Memorial Lecture via the QUB Welcome Centre on 028 9097 5252.

The Stewart Parker Retrospective takes place at Queen's University from October 28 to November 2. Listen to academic and author Marilynn Richtarik reading from her biography, Stewart Parker: A Life in the podcast above.