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Krapp’s Last Tape & Footfalls


A double bill of Samuel Beckett’s most haunting miniature plays directed by Dominic Hill. Gerard Murphy makes a welcome return to the theatre where he started his career to star as Krapp. See what the audience said.


An old man sits alone on his 69th birthday, looking back on his life, recorded ritualistically on tape.


A woman paces tirelessly back and forth in conversation with her critically ill mother.

Humorous and moving studies of isolation and loneliness, these two short one-act plays are spine-tingling masterpieces.


With Artistic Director
Dominic Hill

Ever wondered how a play is put on stage? Fascinating insights into casting, rehearsal, design, lighting and costume.
Wed 6 June, 5.30pm
More info


Find out about the Beckett workshop on offer for secondary students.
More info

A double bill of two one-act plays by one of Ireland’s most influential playwrights.

Main Theatre

View seating plan

    User Rating

    Rated: (5/5), based on 2 ratings

Preview 30 May
Audio Described 6 Jun, 7.30pm
Signed 6 Jun, 7.30pm
Captioned 7 Jun, 7.30pm
Wheelchair Access
Guide Dogs welcome
Induction Loop


Casts & Creative Team >


Gerard Murphy

Kathryn Howden
Kay Gallie


Director – Dominic Hill
Lighting Designer – Lizzie Powell


“brave, beautiful and masterly theatrical poems about the brief pain and joy of human life”.
The Scotsman

“one of those rare theatrical events that will leave no-one who sees it completely unchanged.”
The Scotsman

“if this version of Krapp’s Last Tape is an almost flawless theatrical experience, it is equalled by the shuddering power of Hill’s staging of the 25-minute fragment Footfalls.”
The Scotsman

“The experience is akin to being in a popular modern art gallery viewing work that, even 50 years on, retains both a radical edge and sense of extraordinary certainty.”
The Guardian

“Beckett rewards directors who pay attention to detail, something at which Hill excels. In these austere studies of the ageing process, it feels as if he has attended to every beat, phrase and gesture, leaving nothing to chance…at once bleak and beautiful.”
The Guardian

“The meticulous choreography of both these pieces, allied to the compelling performances and stark lighting design by Lizzie Powell, not to mention the lyrical beauty of the text, casts a spell that can still be felt tingling on the nerve-ends long after the curtain has come down.”
The List

“So, Pinter, Shakespeare and Beckett for Hill’s first three shows at the Citizens and all strikingly impressive. The old lady of the Gorbals is back”.
The Times

“There is a quality of silence that is almost tangible, at once unmistakable and thrilling to be part of.” 
The Times

“The drama plays in the spaces between tragedy and comedy. It is propelled by memories of love lost, an erotic life finished and a proximity to death.”
Sunday Herald

“Hill’s pairing of Krapp with the rarely performed 1976 play Footfalls is inspired. The latter…has a mesmerising effect.”
Sunday Herald

“This Footfalls is every bit as moving and compelling as its better known partner, and a powerful reminder of the riches which lie within Beckett’s neglected plays.”
Sunday Herald

“a haunting meditation on the passing of time.”
The Herald

“this utterly compelling double bill”
The Herald

“His minute mannerisms and subtleties of performance, even amongst Beckett’s grotesque slapstick, are heartfelt and identifiable, throwing his arms around the ancient revolving spools of his youth and caressing them, wet-eyed, like a long forgotten lover.” 

“Howden’s vocal intonation, fraught with repetitious insanity, is exquisite, softly falling into the auditorium like voices echoing around an empty family home. Gallie, too, carries the weight of human suffering in her weak and fragile performance as the Voice, finding the chilling vulnerability and dependence of convalescence.” 



“The coming together of a great Shakespeare character and an equally great actor is a rare and memorable event. From Laurence Olivier’s Henry V to Mark Rylance’s Hamlet, such performances are the theatre equivalent of a lunar eclipse. One can now add to that Illustrious list, David Hayman’s King Lear”.
Daily Telegraph

“A truly defining portrait of the hapless monarch.”
Daily Telegraph

“It is a superb presentation across the board.”
Daily Telegraph

“A sense of occasion hardly begins to describe the tingling mood of anticipation at the Citizens Theatre.”
The Scotsman

“What’s striking about Dominic Hill’s fine production, though, is the extent to which it allows Hayman to become not a leading actor carrying the play alone, but the central figure in a rich rough-edged and occasionally thrilling ensemble of younger actors.”
The Scotsman

“Some stunning performances, notably from an electrifying Kieran Hill as Gloucester’s bastard son Edmund, and a spine-shiveringly eloquent Paul Higgins as the loyal nobleman Kent. In the end of course, the play belongs to Lear, and Hayman makes a fine visually eloquent job.”
The Scotsman

“There’s a glorious circularity to David Hayman’s return to the Citz after a 20-year absence in Dominic Hill’s mighty production of Lear.”
The Herald

“If watching Hayman in tatty long-johns go demented before a crowd of white-coated doctors is like gazing on the ghost of Citizens past, the final display of people power looks bravely towards the future.”
The Herald

“Hayman’s extraordinary performance reverberates with an unmistakeable emotional and psychological power.”
Sunday Herald

“...every other aspect of this superb staging, from excellent cast to Paddy Cunneen’s disconcerting music and sound, contributes splendidly to a coherent, transfixing and deeply memorable rendering of a great tragedy.”
Sunday Herald

“Dominic Hill’s startling reinvention of one of the Bard’s greatest tragedies has blown a tempest through Shakespeare’s text, extracting every subtext in every word, every emotion in every line and resurrecting ancient issues for a modern audience.”

“His delivery of the tempest scene is shattering, interpreting the frustration and fury of his failing character with power and potency.”


Read audience reactions on Storify


Anne & Gordon Smith

9th June 2012

Krapp's Last Tape with Gerard Murphy was a compelling and moving theatrical experience, beautifully choreographed and superbly performed. True Citz-power has returned with this subtly layered production of Beckett's complex text. Gerard Murphy's powerful presence on stage brings out every nuance with elegance, wit and grace. Perfect.

Irene Scott

31st May 2012

Last night I saw Krapp's Last Tape and felt I should let you know how much I enjoyed the performance. I thought Kathryn Howden's performance was magnificent. Her voice was so unbelievably good. Kay Gallie's performance complimented so well Kathryn's interpretation of the part. This is the third production I have seen since Dominic Hill became artistic director and he is to be congratulated in his choice of productions and the excellent way they are realised. Once again the Citizen's can compete with any theatre!

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Photo of Gerard Murphy as Krapp
by Tommy Ga-Ken Wan