June 8, 2014, by Eve

A Play About Krapp: After

And so – approximately five days and ten bananas later – Krapp finishes its run in the Nottingham New Theatre and I hang up my Stage Manager head-com. The play got a very complimentary review in Impact – yet, as suspected, the audiences opinions were rather divided – some people were utterly bemused by the whole thing, coming out in complete confusion, and others exited in stunned wonder. I guess Beckett is a bit of a marmite writer – but at the same time, I do feel that some background knowledge of his intensions does add to the experience of one of his plays; an understanding of his darkly comic existentialism.

For my own part – I was extremely happy with how my part in the play went (as invisible and indirect as it was). I was on cue – most of the time – with one exception when I missed my moment to turn on the lights (which created a kind of bright wash every time Krapp exited). My biggest worry was moving the screen, through which the lights shone, and most nights this was alright – except one night when it almost fell on top of me, as I was moving it backwards, and forced the two of us to partake in a silent, but fierce, wrestling match until I managed to subdue it and got it into the corner before the audience came out.

One of my favourite parts of being involved in a New Theatre production is the habitual meal at Savera (the Indian restaurant on Derby road) after the first night. This is usually a very late meal – we got there about 10.30 – and a very hungrily expected meal, as most of the cast and crew haven’t eaten since midday. Everyone pairs up and shares a rice and nan beard together – so its always awkward with odd numbers, but we managed to sort it out. Predictably, someone always goes for the unadventurous chicken korma… that would be me – but I can’t help it, I have it every time I go, but that’s only because it’s yummy and I’m too hungry to take risks!

Being involved in Krapp was a lovely end to three years at the New Theatre. Strange how quickly everything is over and done with in the theatre – I guess that’s the nature of live performance, you can’t hold on to it forever. Now it’s just a memory in the shape of a yellow poster and a thank-you bottle of wine.

Posted in Eve