Thursday, March 27, 2008

I did not wait long enough!

to see Godot, in the State Vilnius Little Theatre's production of 'Waiting for Godot'. Last time I had seen it in Tbilisi, where Robert Sturua had shrunk it into a one-act play. I was a bit surprised when at what seemed like the end there was not a clap of applause. Not a smidgeon! Turns out this production is 3 hours - in Tbilisi it was half that.

The Little Theatre, in Gedimino prospect, is little, with about 200 seats or so. It was recently done up. When I entered the auditorium I immediately felt at home on hearing the accordeon version of 'I could have danced all night' - the identical version that Robert Sturua loves to use. My favourite actor Zaza Papuashvili instantly flashed through my mind, doing his funny little dances to this music - is it in Hamlet? No, it's in 'Twelfth Night'.

So anyway, half of Godot, with partial understanding of the words. From what I could tell, the translation was quite good, into very vernacular Lithuanian, given the level in society of the characters. Vladimir was lovely, as was Estragon. Found Lucky's monologue quite weak, though, compared to the machinegun delivery of his colleague in Tbilisi. The boy was lovely. Shame that they translated Lucky's name into 'Lakis' - kind of lost the whole point!

Overall, though, it was a much straighter production than that in Tbilisi; little song and dance (music by Faustus Latenas - unless the second half turned into an opera, I don't think he did much composing here!), straight down the line, every word translated. Not so enterprising, and got few laughs, apart from Leonardas Pobedonoscevas as the boy. There should have been more laughs - but perhaps it's my social worker sense of humour which is sicker than that of the average caring audience member.

Strange article here about World Theatre Day. This is typical for the worst of Lithuanian writing; all ethereal and oak trees. What's the point of saying this?