This is the third time i have done this remarkable play, each time with a fine director and always in Scotland! Back in the Eighties I took a student version, directed by Sam Mendes, to the Chaplaincy Centre where we sealed our two young ‘oldies’ in bins into the stage and I stood by with a screwdriver to get them out if anything happened. I also ran the lights on that one and was fascinated by how it really was battle between Hamm and Clov, would Clov really leave at the end, some nights I felt he definitely had and others that the whole cycle would be repeated again and again. With Michael Boyd at the Tron in the Nineties we went for a version that i am sure the Beckett Estate would have had an appropriately long pause in approving if they had seen it. The set was very much a set, a brick drum painted like the sky in the middle of a morass of back stage paraphernalia of old flats and curtains. There were three front curtains, the first swagged to reveal another , which then opened on a track to reveal a badly hang cloth which dropped to reveal Hamm with his sheet and then his handkerchief , layer upon layer. At the end the process reversed but the swagged curtain fell, the tracked one over shot its end stops and ended on the floor, it seemed the show would never end, until a final blackout after a painfully long wait.

Now at the Citz with Dominic Hill directing in brilliant miserable form, I have gone for a metallic bunker engulfed in sand, i suppose inspired a bit by Happy days which i did with Dominic in Dundee, but also through the references in the text to grain upon grain the sand building up. We found amazing references of Mansell forts form the Second World War . rusting hulks on spindly legs above the water with strangely domesticated little square windows.This time i have been struck how much Beckett has referenced the Tempest, the isolation, the mutual dependency of master servant relationship .


model Endgame Citizens Theatre 2016, Directed by Dominic Hill, Designed by Tom Piper

model Endgame Citizens Theatre 2016, Directed by Dominic Hill, Designed by Tom Piper

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