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The KOAN Unit kicks off the New Year with Beckett5, a quintet of darkly humorous, seldom-seen short plays by Nobel Prize-winning playwright Samuel Beckett including Krapp’s Last Tape Come and Go Footfalls Act Without Words II and Catastrophe.
The evening’s centerpiece is Krapp’s Last Tape. Beckett’s theatrical poem, one of his most personal works, is infused with his history, emotion and an abiding sense of irony as he captures the weight of regret for missed opportunity and lost love. Elderly and ailing, Krapp sits at his desk and prepares to listen to audiotape diaries he made thirty years earlier.
Each of the evening’s other four play is a splendid example of Beckett’s mastery of minimalist structure.
Considered by critics to be one of the playwright’s most “perfect” plays (Beckett agonized over each individual line until they exactly matched his creative vision), Come and Go is described as a "dramaticule" on its title page and contains only 121 words.
Footfalls features the character of May, wrapped in tatters and pacing back and forth “like a metronome” on a strip of bare landing outside her dying mother’s room.
Act Without Words II is a short mime play. A and B, asleep in their sleeping bags, are goaded into their respective lives by an unseen force. Although they never meet, they carry each other through life.
In Catastrophe, a director and his assistant prepare an aged man for a public spectacle for a political purpose. One of Beckett’s only politically-themed works, and perhaps his most optimistic, it was written in 1982 and dedicated to then-imprisoned Czech reformer and playwright, Václav Havel.
Samuel Beckett (1906-1989) is widely recognized as one of the greatest dramatists of the 20th century. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1969. Best known for his play Waiting for Godot which launched his career in theater, he then went on to write numerous successful full-length plays including Endgame in 1957, Krapp’s Last Tape in 1958 and Happy Days in 1960. Beckett’s works capture the pathos and ironies of modern life, yet still maintain his faith in man’s capacity for compassion and survival no matter how absurd his environment may have become.
Performances of Beckett5 take place Jan. 21 through March 5 on Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. Two additional weeknight performances are scheduled on Thursday, Feb. 16 and Wednesday, Feb. 22, both at 8 p.m. Tickets are $34 on Saturdays and Sundays $30 on Fridays and $25 on Wednesdays and Thursdays, with discounted tickets available for students and members of SAG/AFTRA/AEA. There will be three “Tix for $10” performances on Friday, Feb. 3 Thursday, Feb. 16 and Friday, March 3. Post-performance discussions are scheduled on Friday, Feb. 10 and Wednesday, Feb. 22. The third Friday of every month is wine night at the Odyssey: enjoy complimentary wine and snacks and mingle with the cast after the show.
The Odyssey Theatre is located at 2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd., West Los Angeles, 90025. For reservations and information, call (310) 477-2055 or go to OdysseyTheatre.com.
Presenter / Producer: Odyssey Theatre
Theater > Drama
Event Phone: 310-477-2055
2055 S. Sepulveda Blvd.
West Los Angeles CA 90025
LA - Hollywood / Westside
Performance Dates: 1/21/2017 - 3/5/2017
Fri., Sat. 8:00 pm Sun. 2:00 pm
Web Link for ticketing
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