sun 28/05/2017

Beckett

Waiting for Godot, Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh

It’s been a turbulent few months for Edinburgh’s Lyceum Theatre, with a substantial cut in funding from Creative Scotland last October, followed by the (unrelated) announcement that Mark Thomson, artistic director since 2003, would step down at the...

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Waiting for Godot, Barbican

In a peculiarly Beckettian development, the creative team of this Sydney Theatre Company production spent several weeks of rehearsal waiting not for Godot, but for their director. Tamás Ascher – who spotted the casting potential of Uncle Vanya co-...

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Happy Days, Young Vic

For those who never saw Samuel Beckett’s favoured performer Billie Whitelaw on stage as indomitable, buried-alive Winnie, peculiarly happy days are here again with another once-in-a-generation actress facing what Dame Peggie Ashcroft called “a ‘...

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Waiting For Godot, Arcola Theatre

Waiting For Godot is one of those plays which even those who have never seen know something about. “A tragicomedy in two acts,” as Beckett's subtitle described it, in which two tramps in bowler hats blether on about boots and a bloke who never...

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Not I, Footfalls, Rockaby, Royal Court Theatre

In many ways, the darkness is the most memorable aspect of this production. It's so deep and all-encompassing that your eyes start to play tricks on you, seeing spots of light and shadow where there is only blackness. Because of this, when Lisa Dwan...

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Watt, Barbican Pit Theatre

It begins with a tall, thin man walking out of light and into darkness. There is much that remains murky in Barry McGovern’s adaptation of this novel by Samuel Beckett, written between 1941 and 1945 when Beckett, who had worked for the Resistance,...

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All That Fall, Jermyn Street Theatre

Samuel Beckett recalled sinking into a "whirl of depression" while writing All That Fall. Audiences at this production - those, that is, who have managed to score a ticket for this short, sold-out run - are unlikely to emerge into Jermyn Street in a...

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Waiting for the first Black British Godot

When I lived in the Caribbean in my twenties, one of the books I found at the bottom of the remaindered bin of Kingston’s largest book shop was Theatre of the Absurd by Martin Esslin. I read it without any real sense of its context but there was...

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The Three Musketeers and the Princess of Spain, Traverse, Edinburgh

Porthos, Athos and Aramis: Three Beckettian misfits as bickering, bedraggled heroes

So this is Christmas, a time to seek comfort in traditional nourishment both culinary and cultural. In Edinburgh, the King’s Theatre has been home to mainstream panto - the equivalent of serving up a hearty turkey with all the trimmings – since time...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Actor Michael Gambon

There’s always the risk, when you put a tape machine in front of Michael Gambon (b. 1940), that it won’t be recording the truth and nothing but. His taste for mischief-making is legendary, his low boredom threshold a matter of fact. It doesn’t take...

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Krapp's Last Tape, Duchess Theatre

A play could be written about, or for, Michael Gambon's fingers, and perhaps Beckett's 1958 Krapp's Last Tape is it. I've seen this solo piece many times, most recently in a studio theatre rendition from Harold Pinter that opened a window on to his...

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Waiting For Godot, Theatre Royal Haymarket

The wait is over. Less than six months after dramatic literature's defining tramps departed the West End, here are Vladimir (Didi) and Estragon (Gogo) back again, with some new faces to flesh out Beckett's eternal verities about that grievous but...

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