Andrew Upton’s production for the Sydney Theatre Company of Samuel Beckett’s 1953 absurdist Waiting for Godot has been running all week as part of the Barbican’s International Beckett Festival.
In her five star review for The Telegraph, Jane Shillings wrote, “you are about to spend two hours in the dark captivated, moved, and when you leave, in some way changed. This is what Upton and his cast achieve in a production of luminous intelligence and virtuoso physicality”. That cast is Hugo Weaving, Richard Roxburgh, Philip Quast and Luke Mullins.
“Weaving’s sinuous, dandified Vladimir, Roxburgh’s wounded Estragon, Philip Quast, ruined and bombastic as Pozzo and Luke Mullins’ menacingly vulnerable Lucky explore the resonances of Beckett’s text with elegant precision,” Shillings said.
Right, getting four graphs in one attempt is a mission, especially prior to a show. I arrived at the Barbican stage door before last Saturday’s matinée, where a mixture of autograph seekers had gathered waiting for the Godot cast.
They were dominated by the dealers, wanting Hugo on non-Godot material, such as The Matrix and Lord Of The Rings stills.
Philip arrived first. I had met him recently at the London Coliseum when he appeared in Sweeney Todd, and he happily signed. Luke wears a blonde wig, so I had to carefully look at eyes to recognise him and got lucky, so two down and two to go. Richard was next and he was very friendly, loved the sketch and chatted with everyone as he singed. Time ticked by, but no Hugo.
It was less than an hour to curtain up. Most thought he must have used another entrance. The dealers positioned themselves downy the street to interrupt him, realising if he did arrive he wouldn’t have a lot of time. That proved to be the case. At 1.50pm Hugo strolled past all the waiting autograph hunters, apologising that he was running late and couldn’t’ stop. I was near the stage door and as he approached I politely asked if he would sign my sketch. “Ok, I’ll sign that,” he said and graphed a “Hugo W” for me and went in. Waiting for Godot, done!