In 1942, Albert Camus published “The Myth of Sisyphus”, an essay about absurdism, which revolutionized the absurdist movement and inspired the theater of the absurd. Some of the early plays included “The Maids” by Jean Genet, “The Bald Soprano” by Eugene Ionesco, and “Waiting for Godot” by Samuel Beckett. Beckett was known for his minimalist style and was mentored by James Joyce and had ties with Flann O’Brien. The minimalism with the sparse number of characters, little to no dialogue, and the use of stage directions, and bare set bridges the gap between modernism and postmodernism. “Act Without Words” (later followed by Act Without Words II, with two actors), traces back to the Myth of Sisyphus, only stylizes another mythological figure of the underworld, Tantalus, who was tormented for water and tied down in a lake in the underworld with a branch of fruit he could not reach above his head.
Act Without Words Background
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