My father, Oliver Hynes, was an educator. He was originally just a teacher, a very good one, but then he was promoted to be in charge of education for the entire area. He was always an inspirational teacher. He was my big personal supporter, always coming here for the Tony Awards. My mother, Carmel, was a homemaker.
I remember thinking, 'I can't act.' Pretending to be someone else is a terrifying thought. The thing was that, along with other people, I could create a whole world. I felt absolutely right directing.
I was born in Ballaghadreen, but I grew up in Galway, and when I went to the University College of Galway, I became involved in the drama society there and started directing plays.
I think I'm attracted to writers who tell us something about ourselves.
I was the first woman to win a Tony for directing, but the second woman came along five minutes later.
I wouldn't call myself religious. I'm spiritual. Everybody's a bit more so as you get older. I'm a cultural Catholic; it's inescapable, but I think I have to believe.
I had spent time in New York, where I loved the idea that theater could be done up in tiny little rooms rather than for lots of money on a big stage, and be tied to ordinary life.
The English playwrights of the '50s and '60s didn't really keep writing or getting produced, while the Irish did. There's encouragement for the younger ones also in the fact that Ireland is exceptional in its ability to make theater part of the national dialogue, and it reaches to all four corners of the country.
Plays by people like Martin McDonagh and Brian Friel attract huge audiences, not because they're Irish, but because they're brilliant plays.
I think women are in much the same place in the Irish theater as they are everywhere else. Certainly, we have wonderful Irish writers, and we have quite a number of Irish women directors. But there could be more, and there should be more.