Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Waiting for Godot


En route to reclaim Gandalf's mantel in The Hobbit, Sir Ian McKellen is stopping off in Australia to play Estragon in Waiting for Godot (insert requisite 'Gandalf to Godot' pun here). Samuel Beckett’s groundbreaking play has invoked the fascination and incredulity of audiences for over 50 years and remains one of the foundational examples of absurdist theatre.

In the famous plot where there’s “nothing to be done”, two old friends Estragon and Vladimir (Roger Rees) spend two days chatting, arguing, swapping their bowler hats and, yes, waiting for a man named Godot. Pozzo (Matthew Kelly) and his ‘slave’ Lucky (Ronald Pickup) twice punctuate the pair’s interminable wait, in which themes of religion, war, philosophy and death are all out during their series of piecemeal and expectant discussions.

Many people would pay to hear McKellen’s gorgeous, rounded tones reading the phonebook, so what a treat to have him taking up residence at the Opera House with director Sean Mathias’ acclaimed West End production.

For your diaries: 15th June - 11th July at the Sydney Opera House

Published on Concrete Playground

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