‘a lovely play, funny and harrowing . . . Mr Friel makes the Irish condition synonymous with the human one.’
— Frank Rich, The New York Times
‘an ironic, loving, imaginative, and all but faultless play. Make that a faultless play.’
— Edith Oliver, The New Yorker
Aristocrats, first produced by the Abbey Theatre in 1979, won the Evening Standard Award for Best Play (1988) and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Foreign Play (1989). Set in Ballybeg Hall in County Donegal, the decaying home of District Justice O’Donnell, where those who congregate for a wedding stay to attend a funeral, Friel’s chronicle of three sisters and their ‘peculiar’ brother reveals the way ‘in which the ache of one family becomes the microcosm for the ache of a society’.