Generally speaking, the theater of writers as Beckett, Ionesco, Pinter, and Albee is called the theatre of the absurd. Here we can briefly list the characteristics usually found in the works of these playwrights. We do not mean, of course, that all of these qualities are found in all of their works. In the theatre of the absurd: 1. The plays are serious but often or at least intermittently comic, especially satiric. The basic themes are a human loneliness in a world without God, b the inability to communicate, c the dehumanization and impotence of individuals in a bourgeois society, and d the meaninglessness of life.
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The plays ran from February 4, to March 6, The plays ran from May 3, to June 19, The play is approximately 15 minutes long  and involves direct address by the actors to the audience, their acknowledgment that they are performers in a play, and the offering of cues to the musician. After marrying Daddy, she brings her mother from the farm and into their big town house in the city. She gives her mom an army blanket, her own dish, and a nice place under the stove.
Daddy: 60, a small man; gray, thin. He is the rich man that Mommy married. Grandma: 86, a tiny, wizened woman with bright eyes. She is the protagonist of the play.
She married a farmer at the age of Her husband died when she was 30, and she raised Mommy by herself from there on. Grandma is at conflict with her family, society, and death. The Young Man: 25, a good-looking, well-built boy in a bathing suit. He is the angel of death, performing calisthenics that suggest the beating of wings.
The Musician: No particular age, but young would be nice. He does not speak and must be directed to play or stop playing his music. Plot synopsis[ edit ] Beginning with brightest day, the Young Man is performing calisthenics which he continues to do until the very end of the play near a sandbox or sandpit at the beach.
Mommy and Daddy have brought Grandma all the way out from the city and place her in the sandbox. As Mommy and Daddy wait nearby in some chairs, the Musician plays off and on, according to what the other characters instruct him to do. Throughout the play, the Young Man is very pleasant, greeting the other characters with a smile as he says, "Hi! As Mommy and Daddy cease to acknowledge Grandma while they wait, Grandma reverts from her childish behavior and begins to speak coherently to the audience.
Grandma and the Young Man begin to converse with each other. Grandma feels comfortable talking with the Young Man as he treats her like a human being whereas Mommy and Daddy imply through their actions and dialogue that she is more of a chore that they must take care of. While still talking with the Young Man, she reminds someone off-stage that it should be nighttime by now.
Once brightest day has become deepest night, Mommy and Daddy hear on-stage rumbling. As daylight resumes, Mommy talks about how they must move on while standing by the sandbox before quickly exiting with Daddy. Although Grandma, who is lying down half buried in sand, has continued to mock Mommy and Daddy, she soon realizes that she can no longer move.
It is at this moment that the Young Man finally stops performing his calisthenics and approaches Grandma and the sandbox. As he directs her to be still, he reveals that he is the angel of death and says, " I am come for you. Critical response[ edit ] The play received an almost universally negative reception, as critics attacked the confusing, absurdist plot.
Brantley wrote that The Sandbox "remains a harrowingly effective chamber piece. On the other hand, Ivey is an ideal Mommy. Her acidly funny performance is enough for me to urge seeing this double bill double-quick.
The Sandbox (Theaterstück)