Love and War in the Big House:A Digital Theatre Performance.

Based on the writings of Olive Pakenham Mahon

of Strokestown Park House


In Strokestown Park Archive, a locked diary, and a bundle of love letters have been opened. Secrets, under lock and key for a century. The Story of Life behind the Demesne Gate during the War of Independence.

Inspired to breathe life into archives, Enchanted Croí Theatre and The Irish Heritage Trust are bringing people from the past back into the land of the living, within the very space where their stories unfolded.

In our three part, Digital Theatre Performance, we meet Olive, swinging on Life’s Pendulum of Love and Loss.

We reveal a woman born into great privilege at a time of great change. Her depictions of an affluent life-style and privileged status are so exaggerated as to be almost comical, but behind the façade we reveal a gentry class ‘living beyond their means’ – a sea of change lapping at their social and political power – castles made of sand.

Olive’s sense of security may be rattled by ambushes and intrigues outside her walls, but her surprising views on her nationality and cultural identity are unshaken and resolute. Above all we learn that the great levellers of War and Death know no divides.

To view these performances please click on these links –

Part 1 Part One – Love and War in the Big House

Part 2 Part Two – Love and War in the Big House

Part 3 Part Three – Love and War in the Big House


The Irish Heritage Trust and Enchanted Croí Theatre would like to sincerely thank Roscommon County Council for funding and supporting the creation of this piece of Digital Theatre, under the Decade of Centenaries Grant Scheme of 2021.

This work was created by Anne Marie O’Sullivan of Enchanted Croi and Martin Fagan, Archivist at Strokestown Park, during the summer of 2021 and is based on an earlier live theatre and digital performances created between 2019-2020. All filming done in Strokestown Park House and in the Walled Garden and grounds. Dialogue adapted from a personal diary written by Olive Pakenham Mahon in 1914 and a series of letters written by her to her fiancé, Lieutenant Stuart Hales, in 1921.




 Supported by Roscommon County Council under the Decades of Centenaries Grant Scheme 2021


Enchanted Croi Theatre




Share this post

Share on facebook
Share on google
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Share on print
Share on email


Our Gardens are open Friday – Sunday 10.30 am – 4.00 pm with tea/coffee takeaway available. 

Strokestown Park House & The National Famine Museum & Café are currently closed for redevelopment. In summer 2022 the new, state-of-the-art National Famine Museum and Visitor Centre will be launched.