ACCLAIMED IRISH playwright and poet Tom MacIntyre has passed away at the age of 87.
Born in Cavan in 1931, Mr MacIntyre was particularly renowned for his theatre production of ‘The Great Hunger’, based on the poem of the same name by Irish poet Patrick Kavanagh.
First performed in the Abbey Theatre in 1983, 'The Great Hunger' tells the story of the severe isolation of Maguire, a farming man tied to his land as the potato blight ravages Ireland.
Mr MacIntyre passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, October 30th, following a long illness.
He was surrounded by his family at the time of his passing, and leaves behind his 'adored wife and soulmate' Céline and his five children, Deidre, Darragh, Donal, Desmond and Tadhg.
Tributes have flooded in for the writer, with fellow poet Michael D Higgins, president of Ireland, telling The Irish Times that his death “is such a very great loss to the world of letters and performance”.
Fellow writers and those involved in the arts have also been paying tribute to the wordsmith on social media, telling of their deep sadness at his passing and describing him as “a great poetic voice”.
All our thoughts to the friends and family of Tom MacIntyre - a great poetic voice of the stage. We were proud to stage the first Irish tour of his play What Happened Bridgie Cleary in 2013 and 2014. RIP. pic.twitter.com/K13Rubbjcx
— Bottom Dog Theatre Company (@bottomdogtheatr) October 31, 2019
We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Tom MacIntyre, the wonderful poet and playwright.
Our thoughts go out to his family at this time. pic.twitter.com/bgguf1zlyD
— Gate Theatre (@GateTheatreDub) October 31, 2019
Deeply saddened to hear of the death of Tom MacIntyre. One of our truly great writers, not just in his words but in his being too.
Growing up in Cavan, with a need to express myself through words, his presence and words of encouragement were pivotal. pic.twitter.com/3s1IacRFB1
— Irish Literary Times (@IrishLitTimes) October 31, 2019
legendary artist Tom Macintyre has finally walked through the door.He was the very embodiment of a mystical poet, terrifying + exhilarating. He had one of the old minds. Everything was sacred 2 him. Tom Ur wild mysterious work will remain. May you haunt us forever @LilliputPress https://t.co/OiC3WtohXZ
— emer martin (@emermartin) October 31, 2019
His funeral mass will take place tomorrow, Saturday 2nd November, in his hometown of Bailieborough, Co Cavan.
May he rest in peace.