New play to reveal hidden history of arranged marriages in Ireland 

A witty new play about an unheard-of subject – arranged marriages in Ireland – is performing as part of the Liverpool Irish Festival at The Capstone Theatre for two nights only, at 7.30pm on Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 October.  An open Q&A with the writer and cast will follow both performance.

New play to reveal hidden history of arranged marriages in Ireland 

by Culture Liverpool

This page is from 2017 and has been archived.
Please be aware that the information may be out of date.

Body and Blood: Monday 23 & Tuesday 24 October, Capstone Theatre, Liverpool 


Inspired by the writer’s grandmother who had an arranged marriage, Body & Blood, by Lorraine Mullaney, is a dark comedy that tackles a tough and hidden subject with the renowned wit and humour of the Irish.

Body & Blood tells the story of an Irish girl who arrives in London in 1956 looking for her sister, who has run away from Ireland to escape an arranged marriage with a man “with a face like the Turin shroud”. 

But, instead of finding her sister, Aileen meets Jimmy, Uncle Colm’s young drinking and betting partner. Jimmy shows her a new side of life, full of freedom and possibilities. Will Aileen choose this new life or return to Ireland and make the sacrifices required to stay true to her roots?

The drama explores the conflicts and culture clash that result from migration and the pull of traditional Irish values.  With Ireland recently electing its first openly gay prime minister, the play highlights how far Ireland has come since the 1950s.

Second-generation Irish writer, Lorraine Mullaney says:

“When my mother got engaged to my father in 1960, my grandmother told her she’d come to her marriage with my grandfather with a dowry and cows but my mother had come to hers with nothing.  The story always fascinated me.

“I’d love to talk to other women – and men – who’ve experienced arranged marriages – either themselves or via a friend or family member. There are many stories that haven’t been told.”

If you have a story about arranged marriages you’d like to share, contact Lorraine on [email protected]. Lorraine will collate the stories gathered as research for a book. Your story will not be published without your express permission.


Performance dates and times

Body & Blood presented by Unclouded Moon Productions at the Liverpool Irish Festival

Monday 23 and Tuesday 24 October at 7.30pm, followed by Q&A with the cast and writer

The Capstone Theatre, 17 Shaw Street, Liverpool L6 1HP

Tickets at £12/£10 + booking fee at

Back to news items