Waiting for Godot: Beckett’s masterpiece comes to East Sussex

Samuel Beckett’s brilliant absurdist tragicomedy Waiting for Godot is coming to Hastings and Eastbourne this spring.

Friday, 6th March 2020, 11:27 am
Updated Friday, 6th March 2020, 1:12 pm
Patrick Kealey, sculptor Leigh Dyer and technical assistant James Dyer on the sculpture. Photo by Peter Mould
Patrick Kealey, sculptor Leigh Dyer and technical assistant James Dyer on the sculpture. Photo by Peter Mould

The play is presented by Hastings-based professional theatre company Theatre Nation.

The White Rock Theatre shows take place on Wednesday and Thursday, March 25-26 (7.30pm). Call 01424 462288 or visit whiterocktheatre.org.uk. The Eastbourne Royal Hippodrome performance will be on April 2 (7.30pm). Call 01323 802020 or visit royalhippodrome.com.

A Theatre Nation spokesperson said: “Ben Keaton – who has won the Perrier Comedy Award, been nominated for an Olivier and featured as Father Austin Purcell in Father Ted – plays Vladimir. Waiting for Godot marks his return to the stage after a decade, and Ben says ‘Godot is the perfect play for somebody of my age coming in. I’m most looking forward to enjoying the experience of what this play is about with an audience, and to discovering what the hell they’re waiting for!’.

“Ben will act alongside our very own artistic director Patrick Kealey. Patrick will play Estragon, to Ben’s Vladimir, in one of the most astounding comic double acts in theatre history. Patrick chose this play because ‘Godot is the perfect blend of comedy and downright absurdity. Like all great plays, it’s always a play for our times. It never dates’.

“Theatre Nation has mentorship at its core, and we’re delighted to welcome Jack Norris to the company. Waiting for Godot is his first professional production since graduating from drama school, and it will be exciting to nurture his exceptional talent. Theatre Nation are renowned for creating innovative, interdisciplinary and exciting interpretations of classic texts. Waiting for Godot is no different. The central set element – the tree – will be created by sculptor Leigh Dyer. His public artworks can be viewed all over the country: including the Norman prowboat on Hastings beach. His tree is set to be a beautiful piece of work, and will provide a stunning environment for Beckett’s black comedy to play out.

“Choreographer Yumino Seki will coordinate dance-like movement in the style of Butoh. This captivating Japanese style matches beautifully with the world Beckett creates. The absurdism and expressionism in both complement each other perfectly.

“Our physically dynamic production will be brought to life by Derek Elwood (David Glass Ensemble) who plays Pozzo, and Billy Clarke (who has extensive clowning experience) – to complete a highly experienced acting company.”

Patrick Kealey, sculptor Leigh Dyer and technical assistant James Dyer on the sculpture. Photo by Peter Mould