Riders to the Sea



  • A one-act tragedy by J. M. Synge that has been describedas the finest short play in any language. It was inspired by his visitsto the Aran Islands off Galway each summer from 1898 to 1902 and usesthe speech patterns of the Aran peasants. Riders to the Seawas first performed in 1904 at the Abbey Theatre in Dublin. In 1937Vaughan Williams adapted it as an opera. The main character is Maurya,an old woman who loses the last of her six sons to the sea and discoversa strange peace in her life because fate can no longer harm her. Sheconcludes:
    No man at all can be living for ever, and we must be satisfied.