Opened 24 Jan 2007
Written: by Samuel Beckett
Directed: Deborah Warner
Produced: National Theatre
Cast: Fiona Shaw (Winnie)
Synopsis: Blazing light, scorched grass. Buried to above her waist and woken by a piercing bell, Winnie chatters away as she rummages in a bag, brushes her teeth, pulls out and kisses a revolver. Her husband, Willie, responds now and then, reads from an old paper, studies a pornographic postcard. A second bell signals the end of another happy day.
What the critics had to say.....
NICHOLAS DE JONGH for THE EVENING STANDARD says, “Overpitched production…her [Fiona Shaw] Winnie struck me as a crudely comic, patronising send-up of a character, who ought to inspire bleak amusement. I was left untouched and unmoved…” MICHAEL BILLINGTON for THE GUARDIAN says, “A brilliant naturalistic performance conceived very much in terms of Shaw's own stage persona… Shaw is a fine Winnie.” PAUL TAYLOR for THE INDEPENDENT says, “It's arguable… that this Winnie is too archly aware of the audience and that this diminishes our sense of her terrible loneliness.” CHARLES SPENCER for THE DAILY TELEGRAPH says, “a knockout production… Brilliantly acted by Shaw, it is a staging that superbly captures that combination of wild laughter and existential terror that is the hallmark of all Beckett's greatest work.” ALEKS SIERZ for THE STAGE says, “An extraordinary production… You’d expect a bravura performance from Shaw and that’s exactly what you get.” BENEDICT NIGHTINGALE for THE TIMES says, “Memorable performance in an awesome play.”