Interview with the Actors of Waiting for Godot

We interview Tom Steward and Fred Harlow of fruitlessmoon theatreworks' Waiting for Godot

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Waiting for Godot San Diego Fred Harlow
Left: Fred Harlow (Pozzo); Right: Don Loper (Lucky)

Fred Harlow has performed in a myriad of local theaters, including The Old Globe, La Jolla Playhouse, North Coast Rep, and Scripps Ranch. Harlow portrays Pozzo, a man who passes by Estragon and Vladimir on his way to a fair to sell his slave Lucky. We spoke with Harlow down below about his upcoming appearance in Waiting for Godot.

Were you familiar with Beckett's Waiting for Godot prior to being cast in it?

Harlow: Not really; I had read it in college, but it went in one ear and out the other - or I should say went in one eye and out the other. At the audition, every person there had a dog-eared copy and I knew I was in over my head. It seemed some people even had the lines memorized. While I lived in NYC I did a show called Godot Arrives and the director urged us to read the original, but I must confess I raced through it in about 20 minutes, once again in one eye and out the other.

Tell me about Pozzo. What traits are characteristic of him?

Pozzo is an accident you can't keep your eyes off of, no matter how hard you try! He is pompas, arrogant, a poser, sadist, asshole, loud, aggressive, demands attention, childish, manipulater, ringmaster, do I dare say Trump-like? He loves language and words. The only thing he loves more than his voice is himself.

How do you relate to Pozzo?

Words and language! I am a language snob, it kills me to hear newscasters say shtreet instead of street or shtrength instead of strength. Git for get... I could go on and on. After high school I went to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in NYC and my favorite class was speech. I was born and raised in Oklahoma, and my accent was very heavy... Side note: when I would visit my hometown, my family got sick of me correcting their pronunciation.

Though Waiting for Godot is only a little over 60 years old, the play feels very universal and like a timeless classic. Why do you think that is?

For some reason the title of this play is in our DNA. It amazes me how many non-theatre people know the title, and it amazes [me] more how many actors have never seen a production of it.


Visit fruitlessmoon theatreworks Waiting for Godot to purchase tickets to the show!

Photography by Natalia Valerdi-Rogers