Time is a questionable matter for Vladimir and Estragon, too, but they have certainly spent a lot of it together, and Delamater and Mason give them marvelous timing and rapport. They bicker, bristle, and lash out at each other while also conveying their fundamental affection. As Vladimir, more the philosopher, Delamater does a gorgeous job balancing the comic with the fraught — Vladimir's profound desperation to have something to do, to be remembered, to keep his appointment. That is to say, to exist, in any meaningful way. When a Boy comes a second day in a row to say that Godot will not be coming today but tomorrow (Speckman, again, in mental-institutional scrubs and carrying a clipboard, an innovation whose literalness I found a little jarring), Vladimir asks him to give Godot a message: "Tell him you saw me and that . . . that you saw me." And in Delamater's next lines, the sudden violence of Vladimir's anguish is breathtaking: "You did see me, didn't you? You won't come again tomorrow and say you never saw me?"

Fenix's production finds both the ache and the guffaw of this masterwork, which with such compassion and good humor acknowledges that the human comedy is a tragic one.

Megan Grumbling can be reached at mgrumbling@hotmail.com.

WAITING FOR GODOT | by Samuel Beckett | Directed by Rob Cameron | Produced by Fenix Theatre Company | near the bridge in Deering Oaks Park | in repertory through August 12 | fenixtheatre.com

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