Rough Girls at the Lyric Theatre. Based on the true story of Belfast’s first all-female football team.

Rough Girls at the Lyric Theatre. Based on the true story of Belfast’s first all-female football team.

It will be a game changing production when Rough Girls, a new play by Tara Lynne O’Neill, takes to the stage of the Lyric Theatre Belfast 4th- 25th Sept 2021. Proudly supported by Electric Ireland, Rough Girls tells the story of the first all-female football team in Belfast at the end of the First World War.  Featuring an impressive eleven strong female cast, audiences will also have the unique opportunity to sit amongst the action on stage.

Directed by Kimbelery Sykes (recently directed Regent’s Park’s Romeo and Juliet), this ambitious, large-scale production is an original Belfast story based on true events which resonates with the history of the city and chimes with the recent equality movements across the sports industry and the cultural sector.  Live music by Katie Richardson (Good Vibrations) will help recreate the heartbeat of the city at the time.

Set in Belfast 1917-1921 and based on true events, Rough Girls, is the untold story of Belfast women who stepped onto a pitch in society-shocking shorts and footie boots, a ball at their feet and a point to prove.  Rebels with a ball, who kept kicking their way through the outraged defence of a male-dominated game, they raised thousands of pounds for those returning from war.

The Lyric Theatre is delighted that Electric Ireland, a company committed to raising the bar for women’s football locally through their Game Changers NI campaign, is supporting Rough Girls.  One hundred years on since the formation of the first female football team in Northern Ireland, this partnership makes the connection between the magic and skills of live theatre with the magic and skills of being on the pitch.  It also aims to bring a new sporting audience to theatre and sport to an arts audience.

Looking forward to Rough Girls, Jimmy Fay Executive producer at Lyric Theatre Belfast said:
“We are delighted to be getting back to live theatre and what a way to continue our season than with an exhilarating original piece of work from the fantastic Tara Lynne O’Neill. Audiences will be enthralled by this ambitious large scale production featuring an impressive all female cast, directed by the amazing Kimbery Skyes and with live music from the talented Katie Richardson.  Rough Girls will be game changing on so many levels and its perhaps apt that our sponsor for the production is Electric Ireland, who are supporting women’s football at every level through their Game Changers NI campaign. Join us from the stalls or on stage, as we watch theatre and football entwine, as well as journey with these rebels with balls who kicked the way forward for change for women in Belfast and beyond.”

This production of Rough Girls is generously supported by Garfield Weston and Electric Ireland. The Lyric Theatre is supported by Arts Council of Northern Ireland National Lottery funding.

Rough Girls will run at Lyric Theatre Belfast, 4-25 September, 2021. Tickets start at £12 with limited availability for on stage seats. Covid guidelines apply.  Age recommendation: 12+.

For further details visit 
Rough Girls, Lyric Theatre

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.