The Northampton Arts Council works to support and nurture the arts in the city of Northampton. The Council awards grants twice each year to artists and arts groups from both state and locally-raised funds, and seeks to improve public awareness of the arts. Its' goals include maintaining and preserving the rich and diverse cultural heritage of Northampton, programming such annual events of interest to the community as First Night Northampton and Transperformance.

Thursday, March 23, 2017


Performances: Friday, March 24 @ 8 PM & Saturday March 25 @ 8PM
$18 Students & Seniors/$20 General/Performances for 14 & up
Location: STUDIO4 / SCDT, 25 Main Street, 4th floor Northampton, MA 01060

Serious Play’s ENDGAME PROJECT returns to Northampton for only two encore performances this March

Including local artists---Ensemble: Kermit Dunkelberg (Clov) Rand Foerster (Hamm) & Puppeteer, David Regan (Nell & Nagg)
Lighting Ezekiel Baskin
Costumes Julia Vincenza Whalen
Sound Robin Doty/ Managing Director
Director Sheryl Stoodley

“Their slow burned rehearsal process is evident in an ensemble that knows their way backwards and forwards through Beckett's script and is able to respond organically to each other. It is a pleasure to be brought into this disarming world by people who have so thoroughly explored the terrain... and are still exploring it.... I have seen the production inhabit both the opulent stage of the Academy of Music in Northampton (audience seated on stage with our backs to the cavernous empty auditorium) and Holyoke's Gateway City Arts Center (a warehouse where sound echoed and the set blended with the space itself). Sheryl Stoodley has directed a production of Endgame that adapts to new surroundings allowing them to infuse it's sensibility without compromising the precision of the ensemble creation.”

Talya Kingston, Hampshire College Theatre Professor & Dramaturg

For the last several years I have been given the gift of not only working with the imaginative, beautiful, often cruel and yet compassionate words of a master playwright ,who I have grown to respect and admire, but also with two extraordinary local actors and a remarkable puppeteer who have been willing to turn themselves and their lives, inside out to breathe in the very essence of Beckett, and who have been willing to dedicate long rehearsal hours toward unlocking and embodying the humanity in what he writes.

In Serious Play’s ENDGAME PROJECT, there is a desire to prolong the end by talking; repeating the same old jokes and stories, by repeating the same old questions and answers, in order to feel alive in a time of despair This is what resonated immediately with me as director, when rereading Beckett’s poetic and vital script over four years ago. I knew I had to collect the right actors and designers to mount this piece. I recognized that Beckett’s writing captured something honest and authentic about what it means to be human in an absurd world.

I gathered a group of Serious Play theatre artists, all of whom would work collaboratively to develop Beckett’s play, exploring the fusion of acting and puppetry on stage. It fit my vision of the play to imagine the characters Nell & Nagg as puppets. The collaboration – with Ines Zeller and Eric Bass of Sandglass Theater, of Vermont, with physically trained actor Kermit Dunkelberg, Yale Drama School actor Rand Foerster, and puppeteer David Regan, a Sandglass Theater associate – was supported in part by a NET/TEN grant from the Network of Ensemble Theaters. We worked together to experiment with puppets as representative of Hamm’s memory world. Interweaving puppetry into the script, opened up new possibilities and interactions, that seem right in line with Beckett’s vision.

Serious Play Theatre Ensemble’s ENDGAME PROJECT played to sold out audiences last year here in the Pioneer Valley and many wonderful comments have been sent along about our version of Beckett's classic work. We are remounting the piece and presenting it again in Northampton, for touring in the fall of 2017.

Audience comments include:

Sculptor Rosalyn Driscoll-

"An astounding tour-de-force of acting and puppetry. Waiting for something to happen, knowing nothing would happen. How could that be so riveting? The power and brilliance of the performance. The entrapment of the two men, the puppets and ourselves as audience, felt shockingly familiar. All of ENDGAME PROJECT is there still in my mind's eye."

Critic Chris Rohmann, The Valley Advocate-

“A deep, animated and engaging production. Rand and Kermit are a great pair, complementing and contrasting each other vocally and physically. The puppets work really well, totally supporting Beckett's sad/absurd vision."

On behalf of Serious Play’s ENDGAME PROJECT, and for more information contact,
Sheryl Stoodley/ Artistic Director
413-588-7439 (cell)

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