Theatre stars Rosaleen Linehan and Dennis Conway join prestigious lineup for International Beckett Festival
The International Beckett Festival will welcome a whole host of exciting names, including Rosaleen Linehan, Dennis Conway, Max Stafford Clark, Adrian Dunbar, Conall Morrison and Sophie Hunter.
The fourth annual event takes place over two long weekends, 23 July and 3 August 2015 in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh.
Directed by Sean Doran, the festival lineup boasts performances in all of Enniskillen’s four picturesque churches, the Ardhowen Theatre on the banks of Lough Erne, at Portora Royal School, in the underground caves of Marble Arch, on remote islands, and hidden locations in the countryside.
This year, the Berliner Ensemble will make its first visit to Ireland with their controversial production of Beckett’s Warten auf Godot (Waiting for Godot) by the legendary Hungarian-born playwright and director George Tabori.
Max Stafford-Clark, the renowned British theatre director, most closely associated with productions of new plays, will direct a new production of All That Fall, commissioned by the Festival and co-produced with Out of Joint Theatre Company, featuring Rosaleen Linehan.
All That Fall is a one-act radio play by Beckett, produced following a request from the BBC, and completed in 1956. It has since been presented on stage including in a production in London and on Broadway, directed by Trevor Nunn, with Eileen Atkins and Michael Gambon in 2012/3.
Festival Associate, Adrian Dunbar, will present a new production of Ohio Impromptu, with performances each evening at sunset on Devenish Island, a monastic site founded in the 6th century, a short boat ride away from Enniskillen on Lough Erne.
It was first performed in 1981 at the Stadium II Theater in Columbus, Ohio, in a production directed by Alan Schneider starring David Warrilow and later filmed for television by Charles Sturridge in a production starring Jeremy Irons.
The legendary Irish character actor, Joseph ‘Jack’ MacGowran, (1918-1973), renowned as one of the greatest interpreters of Beckett, will be celebrated in the Festival in a re-staging by Conall Morrison of MacGowran’s one man show, Beginning to End, with Dennis Conway, dramatising extracts from Beckett’s prose works.
MacGowran established his professional reputation as a member of the Abbey Players in Dublin, later joining the Royal Shakespeare Company, and appearing in theatre in New York. His appearance in John Ford’s paean to Ireland, The Quiet Man (1952) introduced him to world cinema, leading to amongst others roles in two of Roman Polanski’s films. His last film role was as the alcoholic director Burke Dennings in The Exorcist.
France’s leading choreographer Maguy Marin brings her dance company to Enniskillen presenting for the first time in Ireland. May B, a classic work inspired by Beckett’s writing, dating from 1981, with music by Franz Schubert, Gilles de Binoche and Gavin Bryars. (Dates: 24-26 July).
Funding from the Arts Council Northern Ireland, Tourism NI, Fermanagh & Omagh District Council and T. S. Eliot Estate for the Enniskillen International Beckett Festival is gratefully acknowledged.
For more information on times and dates, see www.happy-days-enniskillen.com