Are you happy? This play asks. Once from the precocious voice of a young girl at her birthday party. But it’s implicit continually. Are you happy? Are you happy? Are you happy?

Lisa Dwan in Rockaby, photo: John Haynes

Lisa Dwan returns to the Royal Court reprising her performance last year of Not I, alongside Footfalls and Rockaby. This one-woman ‘Beckett Trilogy’ has been directed by Beckett’s long-time collaborator and friend, Walter Asmus. All three of the plays showcased Billie Whitelaw at their premieres, who has tutored Swan in the part of the mouth.

Beckett perhaps is best known for Endgame (the one with the dustbins) and Waiting for Godot (the one with all the waiting). But the rapidity with which this trilogy sold out both its run at the Royal Court and its West End transfer, in addition to the announcement of its forthcoming tour this autumn, are both testaments to the appeal of Beckett’s later works. The run at the Duchess Theatre has given back some integrity to the so often money-spinning West End stage. These plays are challenging, and a challenge to watch, with their annihilating suspension and subversion of meaning.