Casting and creatives for Beckett’s Happy Days at Riverside Studios

Last Updated on 26 May 2021 by Showcall Editorial Team

Full cast and creatives have been announced for Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days starring Lisa Dwan and directed by Trevor Nunn at Riverside Studios

Lisa Dwan Happy Days
Lisa Dwan in rehearsal for Happy Days. Photo: Helen Maybanks

Full casting and creatives have been announced for Trevor Nunn’s new production of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days at London’s Riverside Studios.

Alongside the previously announced Lisa Dwan as Winnie, Simon Wolfe will play her husband, Willie. The creative team will feature designer Robert Jones, lighting designer Tim Mitchell, sound designer Johnny Edwards, production manager Matt Towell and costume supervisor Kate Hemstock.

The 60th-anniversary production in association with Anthology Theatre runs at Riverside Studios – where Beckett rehearsed Endgame in 1980 and Waiting for Godot in 1984 – from 11 June to 25 July, with opening night on 17 June.

Irish actor Lisa Dwan is best known for her critically acclaimed one-woman performances of Beckett’s plays, including The Beckett Trilogy and No’s Knife, both of which have sold out across the globe. She was described by Ben Brantley in the New York Times as “the nonpareil interpreter of Samuel Beckett”.

Her other work includes BBC TV series Bloodlands, Netflix’s Top Boy, Disney’s Oliver Twist and BBC4’s Pale Sister, also directed by Nunn. She is currently collaborating with Margaret Atwood on a new translation of Medea to be directed by Robert Lepage and with Salman Rushdie who is writing an adaptation of Helen of Troy’s story especially for her.

Happy Days finds Winnie trapped in the monotony of existence, passing the time by completing routine tasks, her blithe and buoyant manner allowing her to believe “another happy day” is occurring. But ritual and a sunny disposition can only keep Winnie’s head above the parapet for so long before the futility of her and Willie’s existence threatens to engulf her completely.

First staged in 1961, this enduring, potent and lively tale of existential limbo presents a playful but poignant look at human strength and survival amid the most surreal of circumstances.

Happy Days marks the first production from recently relaunched Anthology Theatre Productions. With a long history of investment and co-production, Anthology Theatre has repositioned itself as a full-scale production company, producing and managing its own work under newly appointed managing director and executive producer, Lil Lambley.

About Mark Ludmon 318 Articles
Mark Ludmon has been a journalist for over 20 years, specialising in theatre, hospitality and drinks after starting in regional daily newspapers. He has an MA in early modern literature and history, focusing on Elizabethan and Jacobean drama, and a theatre studies MA from Royal Central School of Speech & Drama. He is a former panellist for the Olivier Awards. He tweets at @MarkLudmon.