‘Scant and blessed glimmers’

An excavation of female doubt
by
March 2021, no. 429
Buy this book

The Performance by Claire Thomas

Hachette, $32.99 pb, 292 pp

‘Scant and blessed glimmers’

An excavation of female doubt
by
March 2021, no. 429

There is a celebrated moment in Jonathan Glazer’s 2004 film Birth when Nicole Kidman enters a theatre late and sits down to watch a performance of Wagner’s Die Walküre. The camera remains on her perturbed features for two whole minutes. This image kept recurring as I read Claire Thomas’s new novel, The Performance. In it, three women sit and watch a production of Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days (1961), alone in their thoughts, their whirring minds only occasionally distracted by the actions on stage. If for nothing else, Thomas must be congratulated on the boldness of her conceit, on her ability to make dynamic a situation of complete stasis.

Tim Byrne reviews 'The Performance' by Claire Thomas

The Performance

by Claire Thomas

Hachette, $32.99 pb, 292 pp

Buy this book

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