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The Godots that Arrived in Hungary

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The First Budapest Productions before and after 1989

image of Samuel Beckett Today / Aujourd'hui

The first production of Waiting for Godot in Hungary, directed by Károly Kazimir and Péter Léner, took place in Budapest on 2 November 1965. The inflammatory production of the first Godot and the publication of the play provoked a series of debates. It opened up the way for absurd drama in Hungary. The Waiting for Godot of Művész Theatre was another remarkable production in Budapest, on 25 February 1994. The director Iván Darvas gave Godot a distinctive political tone. Vladimir and Estragon are two homeless people, reflecting the radical social problem that Hungarian society had to confront after the change of regime. The Godot productions of Thália Studio and Művész Theatre are both linked to specific political events that embed them in Hungarian theatre history. The 2014 production in Katona József Theatre resonates with Darvas’s staging from twenty years before, in the sense that Godot’s arrival is never actually expected.

Affiliations: 1: Senior Lecturer in Theatre Studies and Irish Literature, Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church, Hungary


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