The Theatrical Notebooks of Samuel Beckett

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ISBN 9780571348718 Format Paperback
9780571348718
Paperback
Published 01/08/2019 Length 304 pages
304

About Book

'Pattern is as crucial to Beckett's eye as to his ear', writes Gontarski, 'and that patterning dominates his theatrical notes: motion is repeated to echo other motion, posture to echo other posture, gestures to echo other gestures, sounds to echo other sounds. The principle of analogy is fundamental.'

Samuel Beckett directed two separate productions of Endgame, once with the Schiller Theater Company in Berlin in 1967, and again with the San Quentin Drama Workshop in 1980. For both productions he prepared detailed notes that are reproduced here in facsimile for the first time.

Beckett's revisions for both his productions maintain a consistency – with minor variations to allow for strengths or weaknesses of particular actors – that make a 'corrected' (Beckett's word) text not only possible but desirable, a reflection of the substantial amount of thinking and theatrical testing the work has undergone since its publication. No previous edition – English, French or German – includes the complete production-generated changes. This text was approved by Samuel Beckett.

'Pattern is as crucial to Beckett's eye as to his ear', writes Gontarski, 'and that patterning dominates his theatrical notes: motion is repeated to echo other motion, posture to echo other posture, gestures to echo other gestures, sounds to echo other sounds. The principle of analogy is fundamental.'Samuel Beckett directed two separate productions of Endgame, once with the Schiller Theater Company in Berlin in 1967, and again with the San Quentin Drama Workshop in 1980. For both productions he prepared detailed notes that are reproduced here in facsimile for the first time.Beckett's revisions for both his productions maintain a consistency – with minor variations to allow for strengths or weaknesses of particular actors – that make a 'corrected' (Beckett's word) text not only possible but desirable, a reflection of the substantial amount of thinking and theatrical testing the work has undergone since its publication. No previous edition – English, French or German – includes the complete production-generated changes. This text was approved by Samuel Beckett.
  • About Samuel Beckett

    Samuel Beckett was born in Dublin in 1906 and graduated from Trinity College. He settled in Paris in 1937, after travels in Germany and periods of residence in London and Dublin. He remained in France during the Second World War and was active in the French Resistance. From the spring of 1946 his plays, novels, short fiction, poetry and criticism were largely written in French. With the production of En attendant Godot in Paris in 1953, Beckett's work began to achieve widespread recognition. During his subsequent career as a playwright and novelist in both French and English he redefined the possibilities of prose fiction and writing for the theatre. Samuel Beckett won the Prix Formentor in 1961 and the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1969. He died in Paris in December 1989.

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  • Edited By: Stanley Gontarski

    S.E. Gontarski has edited the The Faber Companion to Samuel Beckett: A Reader's Guide to His Life, Works, and Thought (Faber 2006), together with volumes IV (Shorter Plays) and II (Endgame) of The Theatrical Notebooks of Samuel Beckett (Faber 1999, 1993); he has also edited Samuel Beckett: the Complete Short Prose (Grove Press 1995).

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