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Beckett’s First Love: Bravo Live Arts

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Live Arts….
First Love by Samuel Beckett
Gare St. Lazare Players Ireland
Suzanne Roberts Theatre
Sept. 3-5, 2010

Conor Lovett, of The Gare (pronounce: Gair) St. Lazare Players, Ireland, gave a brilliantly devastating depiction of Samuel Beckett’s rarely seen First Love opening weekend of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival. The work, from 1946, (but not published in 1971*) is so bleakly comic, the audience howled aloud. Artistic director Judy Hegearty-Lovett directed. In First Love, Lovett, portrays a man who hangs out in cemeteries and associates his marriage with the death of his father. Lovett, shaved head, poker face and short jacket immediately triggers a misunderstood, lost soul – ah, a Beckett man.

Lovett’s played most of them. He’s considered an imminent interpreter. (The performance told why.) The second half of the intermission-less First Love could have you gasping if you’re a woman who has loved a damaged man though there is no physical violence. The writing though uneven holds quirks and terrors. Love and freedom, this play asks: Are both possible?

*Why did the playwright wait so long? Speculation Beckett wanted to protect an acquaintance. There are two in this one-man play. The question that will stick once you’ve seen First Love. Which one.

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Written by Lesley Valdes

September 8, 2010 at 2:54 pm

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