“ ‘Balls’ is ostensibly set on a deserted seashore, and its characters are heard only as voices, mixed in with the sounds of waves and gulls. Yet as Michael Smith observes, while the ‘beautifully written [text] sounds surprisingly Irish, reminiscent of Beckett and Synge,’ this is just one layer of a complex theatrical event. While listening to the voices of characters—whom, it emerges, are dead, buried in graves in muddy coastland that is slowly eroding into the sea—the audience is confronted with a stage image that seems representative of nothing other than itself, in the theatrical here and now: two swinging Ping-Pong balls oscillate in and out of pin-spot light beams while moving gradually toward each other, then apart again. The unexplained juxtaposition of soundtrack and image sets up an eerily hypnotic effect for the spectator…There is also a delightfully oblique humor at work in the play, as the title and visual perhaps indicate: the dialogue between the dead Wilkinson and Beau-Beau is marked as much by grumpiness as lyricism, particularly when they find their graves being urinated on by a group of children taking a rest-stop from a bus journey.”  

--Stephen J. Bottoms, Playing Underground: A Critical History of the 1960s Off-Off-Broadway Movement (University of Michigan Press, 2006), p. 92, 93, 94.
Paul Foster (author)
Balls (1964)