Maureen O Connell
Robert O Connor
Domhnall O Donoghue
Directed By Michael McCaffery
Stage Manager - Diarmuid O'Quigley
Technical Director - Cormac Veale
Ghost story,love story and revenger’s tragedy, Wuthering Heights is one of the defining moments of the Romantic Age.
Since its first appearance in 1847, Wuthering Heights has thrilled audiences not only as a novel, but as play, musical and film. Set amongst the wild Yorkshire moors in the early years of the nineteenth century, the vindictive, passionate character of Heathcliffe dominates this terrifying story of love and obsession in a strange, savage world where the line between the natural and the supernatural, the present and the past is no more than notional.
A company of 7 actors collaborate in this new production , adapted and directed for City Theatre Dublin by Michael McCaffery with original music by Michael Scott
Heathcliff, found wandering the streets of Liverpool, is brought home by the kindly Mr Earnshaw and raised with his own children, Cathy and Hindley. But Earnshaw’s sudden death makes Hindley master of Wuthering Heights and Heathcliffe is reduced to near slavery. Cathy takes pity on the proud, passionate boy and they fall in love stealing moments of freedom together on the moors.
Cathy, wilful and capricious, longs for a life more luxurious than Heathcliffe can offer. Their life together is shattered when Cathy decides to marry her refined neighbor, Edgar Linton and, abandoning Heathcliff for the urbane Linton, becomes mistress of the Grange.
Heartbroken, disconsolate and anguished, Heathcliff disappears for four years and then suddenly returns, mysteriously rich, set on wreaking revenge on both the Earnshaws and Lintons, Heathcliffe sets about wreaking his revenge, a revenge that will destroy the lives of all around him through three generations.
Though he has never stopped loving Cathy, Heathcliff drives her to madness and death - as he eventually does to his own wretchedly unhappy wife, Isabella; and to the dissolute Hindley, who has sunk into alcoholism after giving up Wuthering Heights to Heathcliff.
Meanwhile, Cathy has left behind a daughter, Catherine, whom, years later, Heathcliff matches with his own son, Linton, so that he may obtain control of The Grange. But in this second generation, Heathcliff's spiritual heir turns out to be not Linton, but Hindley's son, Hareton, whose relationship with Catherine grows to be something innocently like that of Heathcliff and Cathy, so many years before.
Most adaptations of Wuthering Heights end with Cathy's death halfway through the novel, leaving out the story of the second generation, an indispensable part of Emily Brontë's carefully-structured theme of doubles: two generations, two houses, two ways of life, two infatuated couples.
Published in 1847, Wuthering Heights was condemned by one critic as "abominably pagan" for the dark passion throbbing in the heart of its irredeemable hero-villain, Heathcliff. Yet Emily Brontë was a reclusive, unmarried daughter of an English country vicar A year after Wuthering Heights appeared she was dead from consumption at age thirty, never having written another book. Her sisters Anne and Charlotte, themselves extraordinary novelists, also died young.