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Maureen Gleason

Photo ©



Walter Asmus


Under a mute sky of blazing light; Winnie, sunk to her waist in a  mound of sand, and her husband Willie, mostly immobile in a cave behind  her, attempt to cope with their doomed situation.

Winnie, “a bird with oil on her feathers“, as Beckett once described  her, is woken by a bell “piercingly sharp like a knife“ that ignites her  daily survival routine and quest to engage Willie with every aspect of  it. Winnie‘s insatiable need for human connection and Willie’s  unwillingness or inability to answer it, contribute to their “nec cum te  and nec sine te” / “neither with you nor without you” bond, full of  tragicomic moments, culminating in an ambiguous surprise once Winnie is  neck-deep in the sand.

Happy Days first premiered in 1961 in New York and has since then unquestionably become a classic of the modern stage. In 2022, The Independent named it one of the 40 best plays of all time. More than six decades  later, Beckett’s darkly comic vision of the apocalypse and the banality  that comes after remains as timely as the day he wrote it.

Happy Days is part of Zeitgeist Irland 24, an initiative of Culture Ireland and the Embassy of Ireland in Germany.

Walter Asmus collaborated with Samuel Beckett on  numerous theater and television productions from 1974 until the author’s  death in 1989. He has directed all of Samuel Beckett’s plays  internationally. His 1991 production of Waiting for Godot at  Dublin’s Gate Theatre was revived multiple times, toured internationally  until as late as 2008 and was accepted by critics and academics alike  as “definitive”.

A play by Samuel Beckett

Directed by Walter D. Asmus

Winnie: Mary Kelly 

Willie: Tomas Spencer

Set and Costume Design: Tomas Fitzpatrick

Lighting Design: Christian Maith

Directing Assistant: Maureen Gleason

28. März 2024

With kindly support of

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English Theatre Berlin | International Performing Arts Center

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