Wednesday, 15 August 2012

EIF 2012 – Samuel Beckett's Watt, or, A Brief Report of a Little Gem

This show is proof of a remark I have made before that very often simple is best. It consists of what I suppose one could call edited highlights of Samuel Beckett's novel Watt performed by Barry McGovern on an almost bare Royal Lyceum stage.

The novel tells the tale of Watt, his journey by train to the house of Mr Knott where he is to work, his life there and his eventual departure. Much of the pleasure is derived simply from Beckett's tongue twisting word games which McGovern brings off with real dexterity helped by his voice being one which I could listen to for hours.

For much of the show it feels funny, and inconsequential. But as the show reaches its conclusion one realises the story actually has a moving depth, and a lot to say beneath the word games about fundamental human dilemmas.

Sadly the run has ended so I can't urge you to catch this, but those outside Edinburgh should look out for future touring performances.

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