Sunday November 3, 2013 / 2:00pmEndgame
How was your experience?
We’ve been to performances at A Noise Within so we had no doubt that we would be seeing a quality production. And today’s matinee performance did not fail to impress. This production was directed by company founder, Geoff Elliott, who also portrayed Hamm. Jeremy Rabb was Clov. Mitchell Edmonds played Nagg and Jill Hill played Nell. The performance in one word was deliberate. Every movement, every word, every silence seemed concisely purposeful. Rabb’s movement as Clov was leaden with suffering. He shuffled his feet, only lifting them to step through the door on the back wall (stage right). His speech began meekly and crescendoed through agitation, frustration, exasperation, fury, and defeat. Elliott was masterful in his performance of Hamm. His command of voice and diction made the circular, repetitive, dialogue intriguing to hear. Edmonds as Nagg brought an appropriate level of wisdom, despair, and humor to his performance. The only miss in the production was Hill’s Nell. I have seen Hill in other plays and know she is a fine actress, but she simply seemed too young for the role. Her dialogue with Nagg failed to connect with me. It fell flat, I think, because she seemed so much younger than him, even younger than Hamm. Following the performance we stayed for a question and answer session with the cast. Geoff Elliott explained that they did these sessions following each performance due to the nature of the play. There were many questions around the meaning of the play. People shared their various interpretations. I asked about the title of the play, I had read that Beckett was not particularly happy that he was unable to directly translate his French title “Fin de Partie.” Elliott gave a very good explanation about what the endgame represents in the game of chess. He stated that it is the point in the game where both players know how the game will inevitably end, but there remains a series of moves yet to be played before reaching that point. In that sense, the title seems perfect.