Stephen Dillane and Conor Lovett star in the UK premiere of the first staging of Beckett’s novel, How It Is (Part One), from Gare St Lazare, one of Ireland’s pre-eminent interpreters of Beckett’s work, who return to the Coronet following the Beckett In London festival in 2016.
A man lies in the mud, in the dark. He repeats his life as he hears it, uttered by another voice, telling how it was. Meanwhile memories surface, perhaps, of life above in the light.
This extraordinary piece, is experimental in both form and content. For over 20 years, joint artistic directors of Gare St Lazare, Judy Hegarty Lovett and Conor Lovett have explored Beckett’s work, paying particular attention to the work that was not written for the stage.
Beckett was a novelist before becoming a playwright, and returned to writing novels with this, his last full-length prose work. This production offers a new way to see Beckett through his prose – a 3 dimensional way to access a book in which Beckett was looking to express the idea of pure language and character.
The novel was originally written in French in 1956, and, when published in English in 1961, had no punctuation. At a time of philosophical curiosity about the nature of identity, also explored in the art and music worlds, in How It Is Beckett explores the existence of character and identity, and asks the question – What is left when the body is away – what thoughts keep the mind going?
How It Is (Part One) is at Print Room at The Coronet 3rd – 19th May 2018.