Before you go to bed

Tonight at BLOOM TV we have a master joint venture between Jeremy Irons and Samuel Beckett: Ohio Impromptu.

Ohio Impromptu is a short play by Samuel Beckectt. Written in English in 1980, it began as a favour to Stan Gontarski, who requested a dramatic piece to be performed at an academic symposium in Columbus, Ohio in honour of Beckett’s seventy-fifth birthday. Beckett hesitantly agreed and began work on the play at the end of March and the first week of April, 1980.

From the original play Charles Sturridge directs this piece of twelve minutes in a simple way. Taken from the Beckett on Film project modern cinematic techniques allowed the characters, Reader and Listener, to both be played by the same actor, the great Jeremy Irons, following the interpretation that they are really elements in the one personality. In the text the pair only look directly at each other at the very end but in this production they communicate visually throughout.

The synopsis
Two identical black clad characters with long grey hair (a Reader and a Listener) sit at a table. The Reader reads from a small book (described as "a sad tale"), and the listener, never speaking, prompts him to stop, start and repeat with knocking on the table. The play ends when the Reader finds that there is "no more to tell" from the book.

For more on Beckett check our side, and abandoned, blog SAMUEL BECKETT 100.



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