Beckett out of Focus: Happy Days and Waiting for Godot at Dublin's Focus Theatre

O'Gorman, Siobhán (2016) Beckett out of Focus: Happy Days and Waiting for Godot at Dublin's Focus Theatre. In: Staging Beckett in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Bloomsbury Methuen, London and New York, pp. 67-87. ISBN 9781474240574

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Abstract

This chapter examines productions of Beckett’s work at Dublin’s Focus Theatre, a seventy-two-seat venue that was part of Dublin’s cultural fabric until it closed in 2012. I home in on Focus’s own staging of Happy Days in the early 1970s, in addition to productions of Waiting for Godot by Oscar and Taboo theatre companies in 1985 and 1991 respectively, both of which the Focus Theatre hosted. These productions garnered much critical attention at the time when they were staged; however, they have remained – like the Focus itself – underexplored within Irish theatre history. Looking at specific Irish productions of Beckett’s plays from the early 1970s to the early 1990s allows us to excavate the ways in which mythologies have been built around Beckett’s work concerning, for example, how we can or should ‘do’ Beckett in terms of performance techniques, casting, place, space and relative to issues of cultural identity. Examining these productions can shed further light on Ireland’s changing relationship with Beckett and Beckett’s evolution as a cultural icon.

Keywords:Theatre, Samuel Beckett
Subjects:W Creative Arts and Design > W440 Theatre studies
W Creative Arts and Design > W420 Directing for Theatre
Divisions:College of Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts > School of Fine & Performing Arts (Performing Arts)
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ID Code:23274
Deposited On:06 Jun 2016 13:59

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