Godot Has Left The Building at The Lex Theater - Review

Producer John Griffin undresses us all by bringing to stage our innermost quandaries. As long as we live we will question the world and everything in it, including ourselves, and our shortcomings. In this play we hear aloud what most of us would only whisper in the dark (or maybe to our shrinks). "What are we waiting for?" "When will it come?" What shall we do?"

An incredibly surreal stage sets the mood-Think of being woken up from a dream- it's the same confusion and distortion, pandering in and out of conciseness. After a rapture-like phenomenon that causes most everyone to disappear, Joe (Edward Griffin) wanders on stage barefoot, and pregnant with the timeless amnesic question of man- "Who am I?" "Where am I."  To his surprise and at times annoyance, he is welcomed by Sebastian (Scott David Nogi) seemingly the only other person left in the world. Together, sharing a pair of boots, they comically tackle the Rubric's Cube of life, exchanging frustrations, insights, laughs and boots. Giving new meaning to "the shoe is on the other foot", Joe and Sebastian strive to understand the situation they are in. They switch clothes and Sebastian even suggests swapping eyes in order to gain a different perspective realizing that every set of eyes sees a different world. Ultimately they conclude a universal theory. Once the trappings of modern day society are discarded and you are left with absolutely nothing else to do, you realize that your life has been without great purpose and you've done absolutely nothing at all. The dreams you dreamt where forgotten, the plans discarded, the excitement extinguished, all left for a tomorrow that never came.

Confirming this revelation is the unexpected visit from an old man (Dan Moss) and the sporadic appearance by an artist (Chad Mathews). The old man laces the second act with a monologue full of experience and wisdom. Having lived past Joe and Sebastian's realization of life, he no longer battles to accept the truth. The actor on the other hand, hasn't even begun his journey and is still too distracted by daily self-gratifying preoccupations to slow down and appreciate life, or even care.

Joe and Sebastian deliver an impacting, and sometimes startling, performance (the theater is small for such theatrical outbursts). The actor's whimsical appearances add to the graciously confusing demeanor of the play while the old man confirms that although the underlying message is deep and relevant, it is also long and redundant. This is a story that could take a lifetime to tell; maybe that was the director's (Jessie Gallogly) intent, but it's also a story of our heads deliriously dissected in a manner that most of us don't take the time to do. 

The Lex Theatre is located at 6760 Lexington Avenue in Hollywood. This is one block east of Highland Avenue and one block north of Santa Monica Blvd. There is a parking lot across the street.

"Godot Has Left The Building" plays Weds.-Fri. at 8 p.m. through August 6, with special Sunday matinees at 2 on July 18 and August 1.
The theatre's phone is (323) 957-5782. Tickets are $15.


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