Oscar Winner Dianne Wiest Stars As Winnie
James Bundy's invigorated staging of Samuel Beckett's masterful tragicomedy Happy Days drew much critical acclaim during its 2017 Yale Repertory run for its startling and surreal portrayal of stasis masquerading as change, the emptiness of language and loneliness. Academy Award winning stage and screen star Dianne Wiest returns in the role of Winnie, a role often dubbed 'the Hamlet for women'.
The play opens on Winnie, buried up to her waist in a mound of earth, surrounded by her personal effects - a large black shopping bag and a collapsable parasol. Over the course of two acts, Winnie goes through several cleaning rituals, retrieving objects like a toothbrush from her bag. Each object holds a memory for her, and she is transported back to happier days. Her husband Willie, always on the periphery of her vision, is a source of both companionship and frustration. As the hole threatens to swallow more of her body, her futile optimism raises seemingly unanswerable questions about life in the way only Beckett can.