Tangent Theatre Company
WAITING FOR GODOT
By SAMUEL BECKETT
Center Stage NY, 48 W. 21 St., 4th Floor, October 8 – 25, 2003
Directed by KEITH TELLER
Set Design ERIC SOUTHERN
Lighting Design DEBORAH CONSTANTINE
Stage Manager MARCI SKOLNICK
Press Representative SAM RUDY MEDIA RELATIONS
Estragon – Michael Rhodes
Vladimir – Greg Skura
Pozzo – Paul Molnar
Lucky – Jeffrey M. Bender
A Boy – Noah Longo
First presented in Paris, France in 1953, Samuel Beckett’s classic play, WAITING FOR GODOT, has turned 50. In celebration of this theatrical milestone, Tangent Theatre Company has mounted a brief revival for New York audiences.
The waiting is the same. The characters exist in the same repetitious world that we all do, except that they are, perhaps, more aware of or willing to accept the vicious cycle. The waiting, and the repetition are the same, but on this, the fifty-year anniversary of Beckett’s WAITING FOR GODOT, we are reminded of how universal and timeless this play really is. Appearing, at first, to be about nothing but the wait, the work is actually one of those rare creations that can be almost whatever the audience cares to draw from it. For some, Godot is God, and the characters await salvation. For others, they may already be in some less-punitive layer of a Dantesque inferno, forced to relive the essence of one day out of their insignificant lives for all eternity, with only the dull minutia changing in any noticeable way. The play could be about futility, or about the human condition, about our own, eventual mortality, or perhaps, it is just about waiting. For what? WAITING FOR GODOT, of course.
While it is Beckett’s writing that makes this play universally accessible, at least in my opinion, it is the acting that by needs makes it into more than just a waiting game. Here, with Tangent Company at the helm, and under the steady, well-paced direction of Keith Teller, WAITING FOR GODOT can be experienced as the gem that it is. Michael Rhodes’ Estragon (or Gogo) has been imbued with gestured subtleties that counteract the character’s overt gruffness. Greg Skura, as Vladimir (or Didi), adds an undercurrent of personal pride, or at least, sensibility, that softens the character’s compulsively stalwart patterns. As the melodramatic Pozzo, Paul Molnar arrives on the scene ready to shout, weep, fall and scold, as the action demands. As the embattled Lucky, Jeffrey M. Bender does his best to turn the odd creation into an actual person. Finally, in the narrower, yet pivotal role of A Boy, the one who announces, finally at the end of each day that Mr. Godot will not be arriving, we have the sympathetic Noah Longo. Together with Eric Southern’s appropriately sparse set, the company falls right into place in this most vapid of worlds.
Take this chance to experience Samuel Beckett’s WAITING FOR GODOT. It is a play that any serious theatergoer must see at least once.
- Kessa De Santis -