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  2. Department of Theatre Presents Samuel Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape

LEC Department of Theatre Presents Samuel Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape

Coming up August 25-28 the Theatre Department at Lake Erie College will present one of the classic works by celebrated playwright Samuel Beckett, Krapp’s Last Tape. It is directed by guest artist Mark Cipra, with Professor of Theatre Dr. Jerry Jaffe taking the stage in the lead role of Krapp, an elderly man who makes audio diaries every year on his birthday.

Samuel Beckett is best known for his play Waiting for Godot, which is one of the leading examples of the dark comedy style of theatre known as Theatre of the Absurd. This style often combines comedy with existential angst. This is a feeling found in Krapp’s Last Tape as well. In 1969 Beckett won the Nobel Prize in Literature and over the course of his theatrical career four of his plays won Obies for Off-Broadway plays, including the 1960 production of this play.

Professor Jaffe explained that he was eager to have this show on campus for his students and the community at large. Jaffe recently appeared in the Strongsville Community Theatre production of Becky’s New Car, and is currently taking his original one man show to theatres and festivals around the country. Jaffe stated that he was very excited to work with the director Mark Cipra. Cipra is known for acting and directing around Northeast Ohio, including his many productions of the works of William Shakespeare. His credits at regional theaters range from the Beck Center to The Cleveland Shakespeare Festival and many more. Cipra is also a former adjunct at Lake Erie College, having taught computer classes in the past.

The story of Krapp’s Last Tape depicts the elderly Krapp, played by Jaffe, recording one of his birthday “retrospects” on a reel-to-reel tape player. At times he also listens to old tapes of himself from previous birthdays. This is a one-person show, and Jaffe said, “although there are some long speeches in the play, the more challenging part is the long periods spent listening to tapes of his younger self. The part really puts the actor’s listening skills to the test!”

Sound and lights for the show are by Paul Gatzke. Set is by LEC alum Julie Harter. The stage manager is Abigail Banks, who last year appeared in the LEC production of Shakespeare’s Merry Wives of Windsor. Light board operator is LEC Theatre major Vincent Vitale, with backstage help by LEC student Gavin Sill.

"Krapp's Last Tape” is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals on behalf of Samuel French, Inc.(www.concordtheatricals.com).All performances are in the CK Rickle Theatre found in the Royce Hall for Fine and Performing Arts, with free parking on Gillett Street. This is a one act play and the performance lasts approximately 45 minutes. It is presented at no charge, although the Theatre Department accepts donations. Performance dates are August 25-27 at 7:00 with a matinee August 28 at 2:00. Tickets are available through the college’s On the Stage ticketing web portal here.

Tickets per show are limited and reservations are required. Any other questions can be directed to Professor Jaffe at 440-375-7451.