Paul Muldoon, "Macha"
Established in the late 1970s, The Armagh Rhymers are Northern Ireland's oldest professional theatre company. The Armagh Rhymers have also fascinated audiencesworld wide. They have played festivals such as Milwaukee Irish Festival, Dublin Ohio Festival, Glastonbury Festival, New Orleans Heritage and Jazz Festival, Smithsonian Festival, Assite J of Korea, Palais de Beaux Arts, and Citee de la Musique.
"This show is the real thing - a glorious example of Irish Heritage, a heritage under threat from modern trivialities. As someone who has been bringing groups to Ireland for over 10 years, I know that visitors want to escape the garish, pop culture and find a real Ireland of tradition and gentle folkways. In times in what it is increasingly difficult to engage the genuine, the Armagh Rhymers are a rarity and must be treasured and fostered and encouraged."
Director Irish Studies, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
The Armagh Rhymers are committed educationalists. Using arts, drama, history and music to enhance education in literacy and languages, or understanding and tolerance, their work has been supported by educational bodies in Ireland and the UK for over 30 years. They are pioneers in a multicultural approach to solving conflict in the community, bringing together children from different backgrounds and religions in Ireland and beyond. In 2011 their arts and science project OASES received the international UNAWE award.
Ceremonies performed by the Armagh Rhymers are based on primary sources of ancient history such as the Annals of the Four Masters as well as local secondary sources such as TGF Patterson's "Harvest Home" from the Armagh Miscellany. Re-enactment of ancient rites through dance, poetry, music and song transport audiences and participants to another time in history, allowing them an experience of Ancient Ireland indeed!!!
The Armagh Rhymers are also noted for their contribution to Health and Well-Being working with many disadvantaged sectors of society, (from Special Needs and Elderly groups to socially challenged and marginalised communities). Everyone enjoys a good laugh and a hearty song!!!