The Beckett Trilogy

The Coronet Theatre again hosts Gare St Lazare Ireland, the leading exponents of Samuel Becketts’ work. On this visit, in only a three-night run, they present the Beckett Trilogy, consisting of the novels Molloy, Malone Dies and The Unnamable, a group Beckett described as the ‘the important work’. Performed as consecutive monologues over three hours, acclaimed actor Conor Lovett gives a stellar performance of this mammoth work, that demonstrates how Beckett’s complex texts should be delivered.

A stellar performance of this mammoth work

In Molloy a man recounts his effort to visit his ageing mother. En route he is arrested for indecently resting and encounters an old woman and her dog with dire consequences. Malone Dies begins with the narrator Malone on his deathbed, telling himself stories as he bides his time. He finally hits on a character, McMann, whose story involving an asylum, a lunatic nurse and an Easter Sunday outing to the islands, results in scenes of carnage. The Unnamable dispenses with the idea of a storyline as the nameless narrator tries to make sense of his existence.

There is no set and all effects come from the lighting design by SImon Bennison who for the first two plays bathes the centre in a pool of dimmed white light in which Lovett stands. Apart from a few shufflings he remains fixed, but from time to time he intersperses the stillness with grand gestures as he becomes animated over some event. Award-winning director Judy Hegarty Lovett ensures that the words and performance are given full weight with no distractions. The last play sees a white rectangle projected onto the wall with Lovett in the direct line of the source so that his towering shadow looms over him and the abstractness of the piece is heightened.

Lovett embraces the many characteristics common to the performance of Beckett's plays. Often in a seemingly mesmerised state he will pause, sometimes pushing the limits of the silent break to its limits. Then he will start up again, the next lines not always following on from the ones before, because his character has gone off on a tangent or simply forgotten what he was talking about and, indeed, where he is. Much of it comes across as the ramblings of men who relive the past, but often fumble for words and leave sentences hanging; whose mings are full of non-sequitors. In contrast he can also vividly recall some things and tell often shocking stories of how he treated his mother and conjure up bizarre scenes, as with the incident of the dead dog. A great joy is that all is spoken with a natural Irish lilt and intonations that give a lightness to even the darkest of moments.

Often sad and sometimes humorous, Lovett, captures the detached existences of men trying to make sense of the world and understand events until existence fades away. In the meantime, their malaise sv given expression in famous Beckett’s final words: “I can’t go on, I must go on, I’ll go on”.

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Performances

Location

The Blurb

The unparalleled Beckett champions…” (New York Times) Gare St Lazare Ireland return to The Coronet Theatre with their acclaimed Beckett Trilogy. The company’s precise and elegant work makes Beckett accessible to all, highlighting the humour and humanity in his writing.

The three novels, MolloyMalone Dies & The Unnamable, written at the same time as Waiting for Godot, made up what the writer considered his “Important work”. Acclaimed actor Conor Lovett and award-winning director Judy Hegarty Lovett give powerful life to the essence of each of these novels in a production establishing them as the leading exponents of Beckett’s work.

In Molloy a man recounts his effort to visit his aging mother. En route he is arrested for indecently resting and encounters an old woman and her dog with dire consequences. Molloy is one of Beckett’s most poignant characters whose view of society, and the world, is as funny as it is true.

Malone Dies begins with the narrator Malone on his deathbed, telling himself stories as he bides his time. He finally hits on a character, McMann, whose story involving an asylum, a lunatic nurse and an Easter Sunday outing to the islands, resulting in a bloodbath worthy of a Tarantino movie.

The Unnamable dispenses with story entirely as the nameless narrator tries to make sense of his existence. Beckett’s beautiful investigation of inner turmoil is intensely unforgettable.. The novel ends with Beckett’s famous lines, “I can’t go on, I must go on, I’ll go on.”

The Beckett Trilogy was first performed in 2001.

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