Lim"s "Waiting for Godot" Close to PerfectionFor those people who are sick of television comedies with their forced laughter and gag shows that play on words, 'Waiting for Godot' (written by Samuel Beckett, directed by Lim Young-woong), which is presently on stage at Sanwoollim Theater, is just the play to see.
It seems light, yet isn't superficial; it seems serious, but doesn't become too heavy. Watching this play, you will be able to experience 'real' high class comedy.
However, don't be weighed down by the fame of the original work. Just forget that Beckett was one of the 20th century's greatest playwrights, or that Lim Young-woong is a leading figure in Korean theater. Simply enjoy it, as if you're watching a team of clowns performing a play.
This is the twelfth staging of the play by the this director, and the 150 minute long dramatic work presents itself as pretty interesting. It is close to perfection, and the after-taste is exhilarating, just like a mug of well-brewed beer. As many of you may know, the wordplay and clownish gestures that the two vagabonds Vladimir and Estragon engage in while waiting for Godot form the basis for the play's major themes. Not forgetting, of course, the capricious Pozzo and his 'slave' Lucky.
The play may seem rather confusing to the audience at first due to the lack of a consistent plot, but that shouldn't be too much of a problem. 'Waiting for Godot,' like many different farces rolled into one, shows comically the typical modern man who, though not without a goal, cannot seem to work at fulfilling that objective and keeps getting into trouble.
In addition, in this version Estragon (Ahn Suk-hwan) and Vladimir (Han Myung-koo) really hit it off together. Ahn's comical performance, which resembles that of Charlie Chaplin, and the understanding role of Han, coaxing and protecting Estragon, both add to the fun. They seem to slip right into their parts. They have done an excellent job working out the play, which could have been a lot harder to understand without their skillful acting.
If the play staged in October 1999 at the main hall in Munye Theather put its emphasis on the barren background with only one tree in its setting, this performance tries harder to bring the audience closer to and deeper into the work itself.
Kim Myung-kook, who plays Pozzo, and Chung Jae-jin, who plays Lucky, have also done a fine job, and are every bit as good as Estragon and Vladimir in the performance. The part where Lucky finally speaks out, having spent the rest of the play just carrying around a heavy suitcase, leaves a very strong impression. This is an excellent work of art reminding us that a play is the fruit of all the actors' efforts. The play's run has been extended till April 19, and it will be on stage at 7p.m. from Tuesday through Friday, 3p.m. Friday through Sunday. (No performance on Monday) For more information call 02-334-5915.