1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46

enough rhythmic change warranted a "scene break." Despite this, it was clear that

the construction of the play was such that any break was artificial. The play moves

almost inevitably from the first line to the last. Even the beginning of each pause

points at the end of the pause. But the process of rehearsal demanded that some

structure be placed around the text like a scaffold. The production notebooks make

it clear that when Beckett worked on the play he divided the play up into sections

as well, however there are several versions of Beckett's breakdown. This said to me

that it was up to us to find the breakdown that worked for this production. I was

concerned with keeping the structure as far away from the content as possible, so I

used musical/theatrical terms to define the sections. For example "Hamm's first

Monologue", "First Duet"etc.

There was no question that despite the fact that the scaffold we had created

would have to go away, if we allowed the play to just dribble on from line to line,

we would lose our audience quickly. So we needed to find the subtile shifts and

changes that Beckett had written and play them clearly. The play had to hold up on

a moment to moment basis.

This concern for keeping the play alive in the imagination of the audience

began to take on a deeper meaning. If Hamm and Clov were, on some level,

performers, then the pressure of an audience, demanding entertainment, was a real

as well as metaphorical presence in the play. So, "Do Hamm and Clov know that

the audience is there?" became an important question. When we realized this, we

began with the assumption that they did. But as we worked it became clear that it is

in fact blind Hamm who is playing for the crowd the most, although Clov is at

times acutely aware of the audience, with such business as looking at the

auditorium with his glass and quipping:

"I see a multitude in transports of joy... Now that's what I call a