Philadelphia, Here I Come! centres on a young Irishman, Gar O'Donnell, on the eve of his departure for Philadelphia. Gar is presented to us as two individual characters, played by two different actors, representing his Public and Private selves.

Public Gar is the man who is seen and who interacts with the other characters in the play. Private Gar represents Gar's inner thoughts and feelings and he can interact only with Public Gar.

As the evening unfolds and through a series of flashbacks, memories and present action, we learn of his conflicting feelings about leaving Ballybeg, which represents for him both that which he detests and that which he loves. 


Private Gareth O'Donnell (Gar)

Brian Friel

Dan Crawford

King's Head
; Wyndam's Theatre

Additional Cast:
Jonathan Arun, Eamon Kelly, Orla Brady, Ruairi Conaghan, Aiden Dooley, George Heslin, Pauline Delany

Completed play.  Previews at King's Head from 26 May 1992, opened at the King's Head on 4 June 1992, then transferred to the Wyndham, opening 28 July 1992

King's Head Theatre Programme

Wyndham's Theatre Programme


"Double or quits: Paul Taylor on Brian Friel's Philadelphia, Here I Come! at Wyndhams"

By Paul Taylor/ The Independent

Coyle has the brilliant knack of being able to stay cool and above-it-all, while being hilariously antic...


"Review of Philadelphia, Here I Come!"

By StaffCity Limits Magazine

Brian Friel's study of social and spiritual paralysis remains as affecting as when it was written three decades ago...