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Playing the waiting game

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TO NDR Waiting for Godot

POPULAR Durban theatre practitioner Daisy Spencer is in the director’s chair for the third time in four years, presenting Waiting for Godot at the Catalina Theatre this weekend.

The Samuel Beckett classic stars award-winning actors Marc Kay (Vladimir), Nhlakanipho L Manqele (Pozzo) Sean de Klerk (Estragon), and newcomer Mthokozisi Zulu (Lucky).

The story centres on two seemingly homeless men waiting for someone or something, named Godot, to either explain their trivial existence, or end it.

Primarily staged as a school learning aid, the play has run the past few weeks for pupils and opens this weekend only to the public.

Spencer said her personal attraction to this play is its main theme – “the notion that we are all waiting for that something or someone that will give meaning to our lives, give us a sense of purpose and direction. I think everyone can relate to that, and I’ve tried to portray this theme in a very funny, heart-rending way that makes Samuel Beckett’s absurd play accessible and relatable to all.”

On her casting of De Klerk as Estragon, she says, “He has a very strong physical theatre capability, and seeing that Estragon has the potential to provide a lot of the humour, he has been perfect as he has eaten up the slapstick nature and tendencies of this character.”

On Kay as Vladimir: “Marc is a very learned man, which made him perfect as Vladimir is the thinker, the philosopher in this story.

“Nhlakanipho L Manqele plays Pozzo. Nhlaka is a new talent to watch out for. His calm nature and the subtle power he exudes was just right. He also has wonderful comic timing, which helps layer Pozzo’s character as he flips between power, charm and cruelty.

“Then there’s Mthokozisi Zulu, whom I’ve come to admire so much. He plays Lucky and effortlessly slips from one character to the next. He’s a consummate performer who tackles any role with integrity and sincerity.”

Spencer, known and respected for her comedic and choreography skills, says she has every intention of doing more directing. “I’m very interested in set works and making them accessible for high school pupils. I’d like to direct Woza Albert. Hopefully, this will be staged next year.

“Choreography is my first love and a huge passion, but I’ve come to love directing. As an artist, I believe you never truly reach perfection. You keep growing, learning and changing. It keeps me on my toes, I’m never bored.”

• Waiting for Godot ends on Sunday. School groups: 11am weekdays. Public: Friday 14th and Saturday 15th at 8pm. On Sunday, September 16 at 2pm and 6pm. Bookings: 031 305 6889.


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