Info-Juno / On
Stage With George Rogers
'Waiting For Godot'
at the Juneau-Douglas
By George Rogers
– “It is nothing short of a miracle”
Beckett’s “Waiting For Godot” never was
my idea of good theatre even in its heyday. Juneau-Douglas Little
Theatre director Gregg W. Brevoort in an interview went even further to
say that he hated the play. Therefore, it is nothing short of a miracle
that I find myself recommending that you see the JDLT production
directed by a self-professed hater of Beckett. The reason is simply that
Brevoort in approaching the work divested himself of all the academic
nonsense that has been devoted to Beckett’s work since the fifties,
reduced the three hour running time of the original script to half that
length by getting rid of tedious repetition, transformed two minor
characters (Pozzo and Lucky) into wonderfully funny ventriloquist
dummies and the two main characters into down at the heels vaudeville
performers and the setting to an empty theatre. The allegory to the
human condition remains in more understandable form and the process
reveals that Beckett did have a Celtic sense of humor – I suspect early
on he may have enjoyed the seriousness with which his work was
In addition to the director’s
contribution, the cast in fleshing out their characters and in their
inspired performance adds other dimensions to this otherwise desiccated
museum piece. The two old vaudevillians, Marvin Borgmeir and Wil
Shindler, perform with exquisite comic timing and headlong pace and Ben
Wygant as the ambiguous boy (or boys?) who is Godot’s messenger is
charming. Lights and set by Brendan Wallace were inspired!
This is not for serious Beckett fans.
But for the rest of us, it is great fun.
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