In 2015 Gare St Lazare began development on the staging of Samuel Beckett’s novel How It Is and the company began a 3 year residency at Everyman Cork supported by Everyman, The Arts Council of Ireland, Cork City Council Arts Office, University College Cork (year 2) and Vermont Coffee Company.
How It Is by Samuel Beckett (Part One) received its world premiere performance on Feb 1st 2018 at Everyman Cork supported by The Arts Council of Ireland.
'A flawless conjunction of acting and staging - 5 Stars' The Irish Times.
The production transferred to The Coronet (Print Room) in Notting Hill Gate, London from May 3 - 19 2018 as part of GB18 Culture Ireland's program of Irish culture in the UK during 2018. In February 2018 Gare St Lazare held a bilingual symposium on How It Is at Le Centre Culturel Irlandais in Paris emphasing the bilingual nature of much of Beckett’s writing, written first in french and re-written by the author in english.
How It Is (Part 2) will premiere at Everyman Cork in September 2019 and part 3 is planned for 2020 supported by The Arts Council of Ireland. It is intended to present all three parts together in 2021. More information below.
The creative team of director Judy Hegarty Lovett, performers Conor Lovett and Stephen Dillane and sound designer/composer/performer Mel Mercier developed How It Is Part 1 over several development workshops and work-in-progress presentations at Everyman Theatre in Cork, where the company are Theatre Artists in Residence (Supported by The Arts Council and Cork City Council) since 2015. Early development presentations were also been held at The Minghella Centre, University of Reading, Le Centre Culturel Irlandais, Paris and at Lincoln Centre, New York during White Light Festival 2015. On 23rd February 2018, following the premiere, Gare St Lazare held an International Symposium on How It Is by Samuel Beckett, at Le Centre Culturel Irlandais (supported by La Fondation Irlandaise).
Samuel Beckett's last full-length novel How It Is is one of his least known works. The three-part novel is presented in short unpunctuated paragraphs and appears to tell the story of a lone figure in a landscape of mud and darkness who drags with him a sack of tins and a tin-opener repeating, as he journeys, the words of a voice he hears inside and outside his own head. He encounters a fellow traveller, Pim, and a bizarre relationship ensues followed by Pim's eventual escape. In a compelling innovation of form that pushes language to its limits, Beckett has created a work that is as evocative and emotionally charged as it is perplexing.
Having presented ten Beckett prose texts on stage, Gare St Lazare Ireland now bring this unique work to a wider audience through their work. The company are the world's only ensemble dedicated to an exploration of the work of Samuel Beckett through his prose, drama and radio drama.