It is a truth universally acknowledged that every New Yorker has, at one point or another, walked through the city, headphones on, dressed all in black. This is more or less a description of “Cascando” as well – although in this production, you will experience the streets around NYU differently, trusting Pan Pan Theatre to lead you and a score of strangers in and around the streets of the West Village.

Before or after you take this walk, take some time to learn more about the company & their long-standing relationship with Samuel Beckett’s words and work – starting with the program.

Office Hours: Coming Soon

What's in a Name?

Beckett’s radio play “Cascando” shares a title with his poem “Cascando,” which was written in 1936 – decades before the radio play, which was written in 1961. Read more about the history of the poem & Beckett’s continued use of the word at the Poetry Society of America.

 

Cascando

1
why not merely the despaired of
occasion of
wordshed

is it not better abort than be barren

the hours after you are gone are so leaden
they will always start dragging too soon
the grapples clawing blindly the bed of want
bringing up the bones the old loves
sockets filled once with eyes like yours
all always is it better too soon than never
the black want splashing their faces
saying again nine days never floated the loved
nor nine months
nor nine lives

2
saying again
if you do not teach me I shall not learn
saying again there is a last
even of last times
last times of begging
last times of loving
of knowing not knowing pretending
a last even of last times of saying
if you do not love me I shall not be loved
if I do not love you I shall not love

the churn of stale words in the heart again
love love love thud of the old plunger
pestling the unalterable
whey of words
terrified again
of not loving
of loving and not you
of being loved and not by you
of knowing not knowing pretending
pretending
I and all the others that will love you
if they love you

3
unless they love you

Get Into It

Beckett is no stranger to Pan Pan, who have worked with several of his texts in past productions. Check out their wide-ranging repertoire on their website, with some Beckett-based highlights below, including “What is the Word” and “All that Fall.”

Pan Pan Theatre  - All that fall HD large.

Get Thee to the LIbrary

Recommended readings to get you in gear for the show.

C. J. Ackerley and S. E. Gontarski, The Grove Companion to Samuel Beckett: A Reader’s Guide to His Works, Life, and Thought Paperback. New York: Grove Press, 2004. 

Samuel Beckett, All That Fall And Other Plays For Radio And Screen. New York: Faber and Faber, 2018.

Samuel Beckett, Collected Poems. New York: Grove Press, 2014.

Samuel Beckett, The Selected Works of Samuel Beckett. New York: Grove Press, 2011.

James Knowlson, Damned to Fame: The Life of Samuel Beckett. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996.