Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Review: Three Short Plays by Samuel Beckett at the Old Red Lion Theatre

Three Short Plays by Samuel Beckett 
Old Red Lion Theatre
Reviewed on Thursday 9th April 2015

Sara Joyce directs three short Samuel Beckett plays. Although each piece is easy to watch, I found the whole experience rather underwhelming.

My favourite play was the first, Act Without Words I. The mimed piece sees a character stuck on a desert island, but being teased by an "unseen force" as he attempts to escape. Joe Eyre's performance is captivating whilst Charlie Marie Austin's design is more complex than first meets the eye.

Looking at a potential suicide, the second play, Rough for Theatre II, seems to just go round in endless circles. There are one or two moments of slick dialogue, but the piece doesn't resonate or bring anything interesting to the table, despite tackling a big issue.

Finally in Catastrophe Kate Kennedy plays the assistant of an autocratic director, and it's safe to say things don't go smoothly. Kennedy's performance is strong, her comic timing is spot on and she isn't afraid to keep taking things one step further.

This production isn't a disaster, but I left the theatre feeling a little despondent. Perhaps it comes down to personal taste but, despite admiring some strong performances and moments of neat direction, I gained little from the experience. 

Reviewed by Andrew Tomlins (Editor)

Three Short Plays by Samuel Beckett runs at the Old Red Lion Theatre until Saturday 25th April 2015. Please visit www.oldredliontheatre.co.uk for further information and tickets.

Photo Credit: Alex Fine

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