Sunday, 8 September 2013

All That Fall

The Hub
four stars
On the face of it, Samuel Beckett's 1957 radio play is the most 
straightforward of all his works. Over the course of seventy-five 
minutes we follow an old woman's journey to the railway station to meet 
her husband off what turns out to be a delayed train. On his belated 
arrival, we follow their journey home, eventually discovering the 
reason for the delay.

In Pan Pan's hand, however, such a simple yarn becomes a full-on 
immersive experience, with the audience sat on rocking chairs in a 
dimly-lit room resembling a chill-out zone opposite a wall of 
floodlights. With no actors in sight, a recording of the play is 
broadcast through surround-sound speakers, giving every nuanced 
exchange and train rattle a thundering weight.

The play itself, with Aine Ni Mhuiri leading a cast of ten as old Mrs 
Rooney, is a darkly comic affair, rich in pathos and deadly one-liners. 
Gavin Quinn's high-concept production, with set and lighting by Aedin 
Cosgrove and sound design by Jimmy Eadie, transforms Beckett's words 
into a piece of total theatre that becomes a rich and unyielding feast 
for the senses.

The Herald, August 2013

ends

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