Deirdre O'Connell

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Eleanore Deirdre O'Connell

Birthplace: South Bronx, The Bronx, Bronx County, New York, United States
Death: June 09, 2001 (61)
Dublin, Dublin City, Dublin, Ireland (Cancer)
Place of Burial: Dublin, County Dublin, Ireland
Immediate Family:

Ex-wife of Luke Kelly

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Immediate Family

About Deirdre O'Connell

Eleanore Deirdre O'Connell

Irish American actress, singer, and theatre director who founded the Focus Theatre in Dublin, Ireland.


O'Connell was born in the South Bronx district of New York, one of five children whose parents were Irish immigrants. When she finished school, she pursued her interest in theatre studying first at Erwin Piscator's Dramatic Workshop, New York, and later at the Actors' Studio run by Lee Strasberg. In her early twenties, O'Connell moved to Dublin, Ireland, where she set up the Stanislavski Studio at the Pocket Theatre. There she trained a small company of actors in Stanislavski's system. In 1967, she founded the Focus Theatre, becoming its manager, artistic director, and fundraiser—as well as acting in many of its productions.

She was a noted folk-singer and performed at the Newport Folk Festival. She married the Irish singer Luke Kelly in June 1965.

O'Connell died of cancer at her home in Dublin at the age of 61 and is buried in Glasnevin Cemetery.

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Deirdre O'Connell's Timeline

June 16, 1939
The Bronx, Bronx County, New York, United States
June 9, 2001
Age 61
Dublin, Dublin City, Dublin, Ireland
Dublin, County Dublin, Ireland