The Theatre is named after Simon Ryan, who was born near Limerick Junction, Tipperary Town in 1940. He had a life-long love affair with the performing arts and in particular dramatic theatre.
His parents Martin Ryan, a train driver and Lil O’Donnell met on a production of Autumn Fire performed by The Railwaymen’s Dramatic Society, Limerick Junction in mid- 1930’s. Taking after his mother and father, he took to the stage from a very young age playing both male and female roles, which was the norm at the time. In the years that followed, his love of theatre deepened. He was a member of a number of dramatic societies which took part in amateur drama festivals around the country. He often quoted Russia’s Konstantin Stanislavski, dubbed “the father of modern acting”-
Remember: there are no small parts, only small actors.
In the late 1990’s he co-founded Stacumny Players with his nephew Cathal Ryan. They toured the country and parts of the UK and were successful in making it to the Dean Crowe Theatre to take part in the All Ireland Amateur Dramatic Festival. The first play to be performed in the Simon Ryan Theatre shortly after it opened in 2001 was John B Keane’s classic; The Field by Stacumny Players, which had amongst its cast Simon Ryan, his grandson Cian Ryan and great niece Danielle Ryan.
Up until his untimely death in 2011, Simon Ryan remained a proud Tipperary man, holding great passion for his two loves theatre and hurling.