Meeting Ends
Meeting Ends

Meeting Ends

Series: Oxford Theatre Texts, Book 4
Tag: Meeting Ends

ISBN 978-0-86140-003-4

High up on a separate platform, an elderly man calls into being the imaginative world of the play. He descends into his creation, and suffers at the hands of the darkness his own light has shadowed, before coming forward to speak the Epilogue. Meeting Ends is the third play and culmination of Warner’s Requiem trilogy. It received its première performance at the Edinburgh Festival in 1973, where it was an immediate popular and critical success.

The production of Mr Warner’s play is an exciting event. . . . He makes references that are not in every child’s lexicon. . . . But it would be foolish to deny that, in Meeting Ends, Fringe theatre has uniquely produced something that is absorbingly experimental, forward-looking and brave, as well as, at times, in no equivocal sense, beautiful. . . .

'Eliot-like mastery of literary allusion. . . . Martin Scott delivers Mr Warner’s beautiful contemplative poetry with the authority it deserves.’    Sunday Times

'Francis Warner directed and designed his own play with stylised simplicity that put the other productions visually into the second division. Mr Warner may have created a theatre of sexual absurdity. But as the cavalcade of episodes unfolds, and the sexual games we play are explicitly portrayed, we discover that Meeting Ends is more a satire on rampant sexuality and (in its subtle uses of total nudity) an intelligent antidote to Oh! Calcutta!. It is difficult not to be grateful for an evening of sensuous and intellectual pleasure that convinces us that satiation of sexual appetites is not enough, and for such acting that shines brightly in the context of some of the other productions.’     Plays and Players

'Francis Warner’s Meeting Ends receives a first-rate performance. Nudity is put to strictly relevant dramatic ends, and the play is a richly-worked statement, constructed to a musical form, on the nature of human love.'    Birmingham Post

'The language is enormously varied, ranging from a rich poetic style [to] finally and perhaps best a simple unaffected tenderness. The play is a meditation on the human condition: it is sometimes funny, sometimes solemn, sometimes rather successfully erotic. The production, by the author himself, is highly effective.’     Times Educational Supplement

'Poetry and puns and the bizarre but orderly detail of surrealist painting. The play consists of a formally patterned series of scenes, in which the contrasts between the grotesque and the lyrical, the symbolic and the banal, have been elegantly and skilfully exploited by the author. . . .‘[It is] a sort of oratorio for the voices of three women and the incompatible male gods they try to dominate or propitiate. The five characters are all admirably acted.’     Scotsman

'The remarkable series of dramas written by our most adventurous experimental playwright.’ The Times

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