OPENING NIGHT: Desan Padayachee and Mark Conaghan's characters embrace during a scene in Waiting for Godot.
OPENING NIGHT: Desan Padayachee and Mark Conaghan's characters embrace during a scene in Waiting for Godot.

Godot and friends takes audiences on ride of their life

REVIEW

IT was packed to the Pelican's rafters on opening night of Waiting for Godot.

The hotly anticipated production of Samuel Beckett's classic 20th century play explores the relationships between two aimless men, a wealthy passer-by and a couple of young lads enslaved by their masters.

Despite the odd bunch, what transpires is relatable to every one of us. The banter, the fiery exchanges, the questioning, complaining, authority and treatment of fellow human beings. It's about the relationships we form throughout life except this one happens to be confined to a place near a tree nowhere in particular as they wait for this inconsiderate guy called Godot.

Time passes, two and half hours in reality, and nothing in particular occurs unless you want it to. Beckett nails human existence, a journey made up of decisions and interactions and as he demonstrates to his audience it's up the individual to take note of it. Otherwise it just passes you by, while you wait for something better to come along, a concept never really measures up when you take into account the amount of time and energy you spend aspiring for something perpetually enigmatic.

The patience and bouts of frustrations, their friendship and endearing affection, were well demonstrated by the story's two protagonists Vladimir and Estragon.

Having two seasoned performers in Mark Conaghan and Desan Padayachee play these well worn characters was a trip into the heart of what live theatre is all about. You were in the moment with them as much as they were in each others.

Bill North as Pozzo provided the confident disruption needed to throw out the dynamic while his 'pig' Lucky, played by Jimm Woodley, produced one of the defining moments of play, a passionate delivery the calibre of which you might see in one of John Bell's production of the other bard's blockbusters. Newcomer Blake Caruthers as Godot's messenger is off to a flying start in the pedigree stakes surrounded by this posse of players.

There were sublime moments of clarity where you were absolutely transported into their individual plights, their dysfunction as a group as it mirrors many facets of your own relationships and experiences.

You laughed, sat mouth agape, felt the heartstrings pull, as the ride went through the full gamut of nothing to everything. Much like life, it turns out.

Waiting for Godot continues this weekend with peformances on Friday and Saturday nights 7.30pm wrapping up its run on Sunday with a matinee at 2pm.



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