Lisa Dwan on Beckett's Happy Days, the winner of the Walter Scott Prize

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Manage episode 295231559 series 1301220
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We announce and speak to the winner of the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction. Peggy Ashcroft said that Winnie, in Happy Days by Samuel Beckett, ‘is one of those parts…that actresses will want to play in the way that actors aim at Hamlet – a ‘summit’ part’. She was right, several great actresses, Ashcroft herself, Billie Whitelaw and Maxine Peake, have – while buried above the waist, then up to the neck, in a mound - scaled that summit. In Front Row, Samira Ahmed talks to two more, Juliet Stevenson, an acclaimed Winnie in 2015 and Lisa Dwan, in the 60th anniversary production that opens tonight, about the joys and trials of playing this desperately cheerful woman. Tonight, the main stage of the Bristol Old Vic will play host to Outlier, a play about isolation, addiction and friendship in rural Devon. It is written by performance poet Malaika Kegode in her theatrical debut, and accompanied by the music of local Bristolian band Jakabol. While normally, debut playwrights may have been programmed for one of the theatre’s more intimate spaces, the pandemic has given emerging talent the opportunity to occupy the spotlight. Tom Morris, Artistic Director of the Bristol Old Vic, explains how the pandemic has actually enabled more risk-taking. Presenter: Samira Ahmed Producer: Hilary Dunn Studio Engineer: Giles Aspen

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