Writer: Samuel Beckett
Director: Blind Elephant
Reviewer: Joanna Trainor
Blind Elephant’s production of Endgame is nightmare-ish, claustrophobic and draining; Beckett how if should be.
After an apocalypse, blind Hamm, his lame man-servant Clov and bin inhabiting parents are trapped in a repetitive cycle of nothingness. Each day so much the same, that everyone is begging for an ending rather than hoping for any change.
This bleak atmosphere is overwhelming. Trapped along with the characters, Paradise in the Vault’s white washed walls, and bare floors are the perfect setting for this piece. The action, the setting, everything is devoid of hope. More than anything the powerful production these actors have created, makes you leave the theatre questioning if you are doing enough with your life.
The contoured and obscured make up and clothes are captivating. A physical manifestation of the toll daily life is taking on them, and very visually impressive.
Ross McCormack’s portayal of Clov is exceptional. His use of pause and stillness can be very distressing, and the constant pain in his face is agonising. Dragging a foot behind him, his movements almost appear like a twisted dance, in that it is obvious he is performing the same routine he does everyday. His only solace are the walls in his kitchen, and though you’re certainly desperate for him to escape it does make you wonder how he would cope outside the only world he has ever known. Starting and finishing the play in the exact same position suggests Clov himself has the same thought.
For such a young cast of professionals, Blind Elephant have tackled such a difficult play tremendously well.
Runs until 10th Aug