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Krapp's Last Tape

Samuel Beckett / Barry McGovern / Michael Colgan
4 - 27 August 2017
Church Hill Theatre & Studio

Samuel Beckett’s moving meditation on time, memory and ageing is performed by renowned Irish actor Barry McGovern, one of the world’s most revered interpreters of the great playwright. This brand new production is directed by Michael Colgan, longtime Artistic Director of Dublin’s Gate Theatre.

An old man sits alone at a table, preparing for his annual ritual: to archive the last year of his weary life on tape. As he’s done on his birthday, ever since he was a young man. Listening in on an earlier recording, he’s drawn into a chilling dialogue with his younger, brashly confident self – but are the memories he evokes better left unheard?

Beckett’s haunting one-man play is a brief but highly intense experience, giving voice to the conversations we have with ourselves across time – an essay in loneliness, but shot through with grim humour.

Barry McGovern has been performing Beckett’s stage works for more than three decades to huge international acclaim, and was widely praised for his near-legendary I’ll Go On, based on Beckett’s trilogy of novels Molloy, Malone Dies and The Unnameable, at the 2013 International Festival. He is widely considered one of the world’s leading interpreters of Beckett, in performances that feel lived rather than simply acted, and that embody both Beckett’s humour and his darkness.

Michael Colgan was Artistic Director of Dublin’s Gate Theatre for over 30 years, and is a long-time devotee of Beckett’s work, which he has directed internationally, and has produced for film and television.

This landmark production brings together two of the world’s finest Beckett interpreters in an unforgettable and deeply personal drama by one of the world’s greatest ever writers.

Arguably the greatest living male performer of Beckett's work

The Herald

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  • Running time: 
    55mins approx (no interval)


Church Hill Theatre & Studio

Morningside Road, Edinburgh, EH10 4DR

Supported by

Culture Ireland logo



Michael Colgan Director
Barry McGovern Actor

A production by Clare Street

Krapp's Last Tape | The Herald

August 7th 2017

Arguably the greatest living male performer of Beckett's work ★★★★★

Read the full review

Review by: 

Neil Cooper
The Herald 

Krapp's Last Tape | The Times

August 9th 2017

masterfully done ★★★★

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Review by: 

Krapp's Last Tape | The Stage

August 8th 2017

playful and generous ★★★★

Read the full review here

Review by: 

Thom Dibdin
The Stage

Krapp's Last Tape | The List

August 13th 2017

Beckett's one-act exploration of ageing and memory is a festival highlight ★★★★

Read the full review here

Review by: 

Adeline Amar
The List

Krapp's Last Tape | Edinburgh Guide

August 9th 2017

McGovern is never less than the master of the seeming chaos over which he presides ★★★★★

Read the full review here

Review by: 

Bill Dunlop
Edinburgh Guide

Krapp's Last Tape | The Scotsman

August 8th 2017

[Barry McGovern] delivers Krapp’s own lines with a gruff, humorous and strangely vigorous exhaustion that does them full justice ★★★★

Read the full review here

Review by: 

Joyce MacMillan
The Scotsman

Krapp's Last Tape | What's On Stage

August 8th 2017

Michael Coglan's careful direction is subtle and precise and enables McGovern to fly in this role ★★★★

Read the full review here

Review by: 

Daisy Bowie-Sell
What's On Stage

Photo: Pat Redmond

This event was part of a previous International Festival and is therefore unavailable to book.

The 2018 International Festival will be available to browse online in the spring.


Previews: £20
All tickets: £25

Current discounts

Students: 30% OFF
Senior citizens: 30% OFF
Unemployed: 30% OFF
BECTU, Equity, MU: 30% OFF
Under 18s: 50% OFF
Young Scot cardholders: 50% OFF