Samuel Beckett Headshot

Samuel Beckett

Date of Death: December 22, 1989

Birth Place: Foxrock, County Dublin, IRELAND

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Samuel Beckett BIO

Samuel Beckett is widely regarded as one of the most influential playwrights of the 20th century. Born in Dublin, Ireland in 1906, Beckett attended Trinity College Dublin and later taught at the École Normale Supérieure in Paris. He wrote his first novel, Dream of Fair to Middling Women, in 1932, but it was never published during his lifetime.

Beckett's first major play, Waiting for Godot, premiered in Paris in 1953 and is now considered a seminal work of the Theatre of the Absurd. The play's two main characters, Vladimir and Estragon, wait for the eponymous Godot, who never arrives. The play's themes of existentialism, meaninglessness, and the human condition struck a chord with audiences and critics alike. Waiting for Godot has since been performed countless times around the world and has been translated into over 20 languages.

Beckett's other major plays include Endgame (1957), Krapp's Last Tape (1958), and Happy Days (1961). These works continue to be studied and performed today, and have cemented Beckett's reputation as a master of modernist drama.

In addition to his plays, Beckett also wrote a number of novels, including Molloy (1951), Malone Dies (1951), and The Unnamable (1953). These works are known for their experimental style, complex themes, and exploration of the limits of language.

Beckett was also a prolific writer of poetry, essays, and short stories. His work often dealt with themes of alienation, suffering, and the search for meaning in a world that seems to offer none. Beckett's writing is marked by its spare, minimalist style, which he developed in response to what he saw as the excesses of modern literature.

Beckett's influence on the arts cannot be overstated. His work has inspired countless writers, artists, and filmmakers, and his ideas about the nature of existence and the human condition continue to resonate with audiences today.

Despite his success as a writer, Beckett was notoriously private and reclusive. He rarely gave interviews and shunned publicity. He spent the last years of his life in a nursing home in Paris, where he died in 1989 at the age of 83.

Beckett's most recent work is his posthumously published novella, Echo's Bones, which was released in 2014. The work was originally intended to be the final chapter of his novel, Murphy, but was cut by his publisher at the time. The novella tells the story of a man who is haunted by the ghost of his dead wife, and explores themes of memory, loss, and the nature of reality.

Samuel Beckett STAGE CREDITS

Samuel Beckett Productions

[Off-Broadway, 1986]


Source Material
Source Material

Samuel Beckett Awards and Nominations

Obie Awards - 1984 - Playwriting

Samuel Beckett, Ohio Impromptu

Obie Awards - 1984 - Playwriting

Samuel Beckett, What Where

Obie Awards - 1984 - Playwriting

Samuel Beckett, Catastrophe

Obie Awards - 1984 - Playwriting

Samuel BeckettPocket

Obie Awards - 1964 - Best Play

Samuel Beckett Play

Obie Awards - 1962 - Best Foreign Play

Samuel Beckett, Happy Days

Obie Awards - 1960 - Distinguished Play

Samuel Beckett, Krapp's Last Tape

Samuel Beckett Videos

Samuel Beckett News

Jeanne Beckwith's Newest Comic Drama SAM & JIM IN HELL! Announced At Lost Nation Theater

Get the full scoop on 'Sam & Jim in Hell,' the new play reopening at Montpelier City Hall! Check out the press release and attached photos for all the details.

Dirt Dogs Theatre Co. to Open Season 8 With THE BIRDS

DIRT DOGS THEATRE CO. opens Season 8 with 'The Birds' in a thrilling production.

Eric Berryman, Johanna Day & More Join SCENE PARTNERS World Premiere at Vineyard Theatre

Discover the latest additions to the cast of 'Scene Partners' at the Vineyard Theatre. Learn more about the exciting world premiere production and stay up-to-date with the latest news.

Review: Samuel Beckett's WAITING FOR GODOT at STNJ is an Exceptional Theatrical Experience

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (STNJ) continues their successful season themed “Take Flight” with the Main Stage production of Samuel Beckett’s groundbreaking tragicomedy, 'Waiting for Godot.'

Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey to Present WAITING FOR GODOT Beginning Next Month

The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey (STNJ) will continue its 2023 Main Stage season with Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot. Hailed “one of the true masterpieces of the century” by the New York Times, Godot has fascinated and infuriated audiences since it burst upon the world in 1953. This funny, cruel, moving, enigmatic metaphor is “theatre of the absurd” at its most breathtaking pinnacle.

Exclusive: Broadway's Best Share Advice for Young Performers with Big Dreams

Seeing a Broadway show can be just the beginning of a lifelong love affair with the theatre. Stars from the participating Kids’ Night on Broadway shows are sharing words of advice for young performers with dreams of being on Broadway some day.

Review: HAPPY DAYS at Northwest Classical Theatre Collaborative

Samuel Beckett’s 1961 masterpiece HAPPY DAYS, now being presented by the Northwest Classical Theatre Collaborative, is a tragicomic meditation on how to hang onto our humanity as time marches us slowly toward death. It’s equal parts LOL funny and deeply depressing, and it’s eerily relevant to our current post-pandemic world that is also burning.

Vineyard Theatre Sets World Premiere & New York Premiere for 2023-24 Season

Discover the eagerly anticipated lineup of world premiere and New York premiere shows coming to Vineyard Theatre for their 2023-24 season. Get all the details on performance dates and highlights in this comprehensive article.

Samuel Beckett Biopic DANCE FIRST Starring Gabriel Byrne to Close San Sebastian Film Festival

According to The Hollywood Reporter, DANCE FIRST, the Samuel Beckett biopic directed by Oscar winner James Marsh, will close the 71st San Sebastian Film Festival, running September 22nd through 30.

THE OUTSIDERS Musical Will Open on Broadway in 2024

The Outsiders, the new musical based on the seminal novel by S.E. Hinton & Francis Ford Coppola's landmark motion picture, will come to Broadway this season at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre.

GENESIS OWUSU Shares 'Stay Blessed' From New Album 'STRUGGLER'

Owusu also shares the album’s third single, “Stay Blessed,” and the Claudia Sangiorgi Dalimore-directed video featuring Owusu and his Roaches – fans from across Australia that showed up to the video shoot in Melbourne ready to shave their heads and dawn the album’s iconic red stripe on their heads. Watch the video now!

Review: BECKETT.WOMEN. At HERE Arts Center

What did our critic think of BECKETT.WOMEN. at HERE Arts Center?AnomalousCo recently presented the world premiere of Beckett.Women., an evening of three short plays by Samuel Beckett: Footfalls, Not I and Rockaby. Designed and directed by Diana Zhdanova, the production ran from July 28th - 30th, with plans to tour.

La Coordinación Nacional De Teatro Presentará Una Variada Programación Escénica Durante Agosto

Para el mes de agosto, la programación de la Coordinación Nacional de Teatro del Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes y Literatura (Inbal), en el Centro Cultural del Bosque (CCB) estará integrada por 13 puestas en escena de compañías que proponen distintas temáticas. 

Michael Shannon & Paul Sparks Led WAITING FOR GODOT & More Set for TFANA 2023-24 Season

Discover the exciting lineup for the TFANA 2023-24 season, featuring the talented duo Michael Shannon and Paul Sparks in the iconic play Waiting for Godot. Get all the details on the dates and venue, and make sure not to miss this powerful and highly anticipated production.

Dublin Theatre Festival 2023 Lineup Revealed

The line-up for Dublin Theatre Festival 2023 has been revealed, one of the most ambitious editions of the festival in recent years, inviting audiences from ages 4 upwards to be part of this annual celebration of live performance. Learn more about the lineup here!

Luna Summer Teen Conservatory Presents MIDDLETOWN, August 4-6

The Luna Stage Teen Summer Conservatory will present Middletown by Will Eno for three public performances August 4- August 6.

Bill Irwin and Jacob Ming-Trent to Join Eden Espinosa & More at WTF Cabaret

Don't miss the incredible lineup featuring Bill Irwin and Jacob Ming-Trent, joining Eden Espinosa and more at the highly anticipated WTF Cabaret. Prepare to be amazed by the extraordinary performances and talent on display.

David Cale, Les Waters, Ryan J. Haddad & More to Take Part in Berkeley Rep's 2023 Ground Floor Program

Get a glimpse into the future of theater as Berkeley Rep announces the talented participants joining The Ground Floor program for 2023. From emerging artists to rising stars, explore the innovative works and fresh voices shaping the industry.

27 Theater Books for Your Summer 2023 Reading List

From theatre biographies to theatre fiction; theatre books for kids to theatre history; check out our collection of 27 new Broadway books for every theatre lover's Summer reading list.


Samuel Beckett has written 23 shows including Embers (Playwright), Play/ The Lover (Playwright), Krapp's Last Tape/ The Zoo Story (Playwright), Happy Days (Playwright), Oh! Calcutta! (Material), Jack MacGowran in the Works of Samuel Beckett (Material), Happy Days/ Act Without Words 1 (Playwright), Krapp's Last Tape/ Not I (Playwright), Mercier & Camier (Source Material), Play and Other Plays (Playwright), Samuel Beckett's Ohio Impromptu, Catastrophe, What Where (Playwright), Rockaby (Playwright), Endgame (Playwright), All Strange Away (Playwright), I'll Go On (Source Material), Happy Days (Playwright), Texts for Nothing (Playwright), Krapp's Last Tape (Playwright), Beckett/Albee (Playwright), Beckett Shorts (Playwright), Waiting for Godot (Playwright), All That Fall (Playwright), Endgame (Playwright).

Best Revival (Olivier Awards) for Endgame , Special Citation (New York Drama Critics Circle Awards) for , Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Ohio Impromptu , Playwriting (Obie Awards) for What Where , Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Catastrophe , Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Pocket , Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Not I , Best Play (Obie Awards) for Play , Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Happy Days , Distinguished Play (Obie Awards) for Krapp's Last Tape Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Endgame and Most Controversial Play (Evening Standard Awards) for Waiting for Godot .

Special Citation (New York Drama Critics Circle Awards) for , Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Ohio Impromptu, Playwriting (Obie Awards) for What Where, Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Catastrophe, Playwriting (Obie Awards) for Pocket, Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Not I, Best Play (Obie Awards) for Play, Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Happy Days, Distinguished Play (Obie Awards) for Krapp's Last Tape Best Foreign Play (Obie Awards) for Endgameand Most Controversial Play (Evening Standard Awards) for Waiting for Godot.

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