THEATER REVIEW Hellish Half-Light


Playwright: Samuel Beckett. At: Mary-Arrchie Theatre Compay at Angel Island, 731 W. Sheridan Rd. Tickets: 773-871-0442; www.ticketweb.com; $25. Runs through: Aug. 30

Actors love the plays of Samuel Beckett for the same reasons that audiences hate them. As with his successors, Harold Pinter and Vaclav Havel, they propose a universe steeped in ambiguities itching for performers to lend them coherence. When this mission is accomplished, deep insights into the human condition are revealed. When not, the confusion is enough to trigger howls of frustration in both presenters and witnesses.

The return of Chicago expat Jennifer Markowitz, director of the multiple award-winning Never Come Morning and Hellcab in the 1990s, is alone sufficient to inspire confidence, even when attached to a medley of six short plays by an author whose definition of “short” can range from hours to instants. Markowitz’s recent sojourn in England has rendered her as deft

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