Who Farted?

Quoting Samuel Beckett here, don’t look at me like that.  This is serious, serious art.  With themes and symbolism and ambiguity and everything.  Literature, man!

Specifically, Waiting for Godot at Roundabout Theatre (in Studio 54).  It is meant as a comedy, but when you read the script it comes off all literary and…  interesting. Funny, but in a cerebral way.  But put Nathan Lane and Bill Irwin, two of the world’s greatest clowns, in the roles of Estragon and Vladimir, add John Goodman as Pozzo and the unknown (to me) John Glover as Lucky, and then turn them loose, and you end up with side-splitting physical comedy.  Turns out the themes and symbolism and whatnot come through just fine when you do that.  Which I guess is why it’s considered a masterpiece.

Yes, we did wonder when Nathan Lane, rolling around on the floor with Goodman and Irwin, said “Who farted?”, whether that was in the original text.  And yes, it is.

Best part was when Estragon took Pozzo’s whip and “attempted” to use it.  30 seconds of Nathan Lane cavorting around the entire stage flailing an 8 foot bullwhip around everywhere.  Somehow without hurting anyone, including himself.  That took some practice, I guarantee.  It took us another minute to recover from laughing about that.

Kudos to director Anthony Page for playing it for the comedy.  I wondered for a millisecond if that would detract from the serious themes.  Nope.

Worth the drive to NYC!

1 Response to “Who Farted?”

  1. 1 Allen

    Glad you got to see Godot in NY! I was shocked by the casting, at first, but since I didn’t get to see it, everything was ok.

    Beckett is my favorite playwright, second to the Bard. I played Pozzo in a rep production by the Goddard Players, directed by Richard Lear. The management of Montreal Expo’s International Pavilion invited us to do a 3-week run. We almost made it, but had cast scheduling conflicts, so it never happened. Estragon, played by David Mamet, managed to get his theatrical career back on track, though.

Comments are currently closed.