Violet Gibson – The Woman who shot Mussolini

In 1926 Irish aristocrat Violet Gibson (aged 49) shot Benito Mussolini the then Italian Prime Minister. Everyone except Violet thought it was madness. The fate of Violet hinged on whether she would stand trial as a political criminal or be declared insane.

We hear Violets self effacing and often funny account of her absurd life governed by illness, death and the shackles of a male dominated Victorian society. Her questioning nature will not let her fiddle and twaddle her days away with nosegays and needlepoint and she strives to achieve something meaningful in her life. Psychological exploration brings her to religion and moral obligation. Is Violet mad, bad or neither? Can society benefit by listening to the people who stand alone and bold? The play explores the dangers of demoralizing citizens by creating minorities and the instability of moral judgement on all sides.

Writer: Alice Barry
Director: Jason Byrne
Cast : Alice Barry
Designer: Steve Neale
Sound Design: Rob Moloney

violet_featuredViolet Gibson, The Woman Who Shot Mussolini

Everyman Palace Theatre, Cork  16th-20th August-

The Mill Theatre, Dundrum, Dublin 25th-27th



Alice Barry, founder of Noggin Theatre Company and writer of Violet Gibson: The Woman Who Shot Mussolini, succeeds in both entertaining and educating her audience with her latest work. Although this is not uncommon in theatre, this multi-talented artist performs the one-woman show herself. It is rare to find a gem in Irish theatre that can captivate an audience single-handedly for almost two hours. With the Waking the Feminist campaign growing daily and the threat of terror incurred by minorities a real issue for the world this play is zeitgeist in it’s content. The dramatic and moving text will inspire and uplift the audience. This story about an independent woman looking for equality created by an equally inspiring Irish woman of our time, is a great tool for the feminist campaign. The work showcases the best of Irish talent. Barry shows how capable Irish female theatre-makers are of wonderful things. Miss it at your peril.