'This is what I find so wonderful - stuck up to her diddies in the bleeding ground...' Funny, pathetic, frightened, callous, bawdy, and charming, this examination of the in's and outs of the mind and heart more than hold anyone for an evening.
Written by Samuel Beckett
Directed by Maarten van Dijk
Performances: January 28-31, February 4-7, 1997
Venue: Studio HH180, Hagey Hall
Edith Oliver of the New Yorker penned these memorable words about Samuel Beckett's original New York production of Happy Days. The University of Waterloo Drama Department mounted, for the first time, a production of this great modern classic. Samuel Beckett, renowned for his absurdist plays Waiting for Godot and Endgame, is a Nobel Prize winner, recognized for his extensive body of work and his contribution to 20th century Drama.
Happy Days is a surreal tragi-comedy about a middle class marriage between Winnie, an ageing housewife, and her husband Willie. The indefatigable heroine Winnie, is buried from the waist down in desert sand and by the second act only her head struggles to stay above the consuming mound of dirt. The play was full of comic ironies depicting the tragedy of the human condition. A virtuoso work for one actor, Happy Days is a poignant, comic and tragic monologue for its heroine Winnie.
Vicki Sloan, a Drama/English major, was superb as the optimistic Winnie, capturing the character's acrobatic existence between reality and fiction. Ms. Sloan has acted in many productions with the Waterloo Drama Department, including Female Parts where she played the vivacious Dancing mistress, in Cloud Nine where she carried three roles as Mrs. Saunders, Betty, and Ellen, and in The Crucible as Rebecca Nurse. She has also worked outside the university for the Woodstock Little Theatre on various productions, the most notable was her portrayal of Mary Snow in David French's Salt Water Moon, which won the Best Production at the 1991 Theatre Ontario Festival. Stephen Bailey, a Drama and Recreation Leisure major, played Willie, Winnie's endearing and almost silent partner. Mr. Bailey has been in the University of Waterloo's Production of Chicago and his outside work included Dr. Faustus with the Raven Black Company and numerous musicals.
Profound, poetic and witty, Happy Days ran January 28 to 31st and the following week from February 4 to 7th, start time at 8:00pm in Hagey Hall's Studio 180.