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Not I, Krapp's Last Tape 

To Sun Dec 2, BusStop Theatre, 2203 Gottingen, Tue-Sat 8pm, Sun 3pm, 8pm, $15/$20, 429-1797

Samuel Beckett's Not I and Krapp's Last Tape are both difficult and demanding plays. The first is the story of an elderly woman who has suffered from a life-long mental illness that rendered her almost mute. Now seemingly trapped in a paralyzed body, her mouth (the only thing visible in the darkened theatre) spews forth her tale in a tortured and circuitous way, steadfastly eschewing the word "I." It is terrifying and thought-provoking. Janice Jackson deserves kudos for a brave performance. Krapp's Last Tape is even more disturbing. The long silences and disgusting habits of Krapp (a wonderfully perverse Tim Leary), an elderly man listening to taped diary entries from is younger self, are discomfiting. Krapp rails against his younger, more optimistic self, and revels lasciviously in the memory of a past love affair, but leaves no hope that he will learn anything from his sad life. In both plays, the audience is transported right into the character's mind, and while this is not always a comfortable place to be, it is a unique and rewarding experience.

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