Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot was the most radically avant-garde play to come out of 50s Paris. In the crucial Post War (II) decade, it was a disturbing and yet outwitting theatrical breakthrough that explored the margins of theatre. As Beckett went on, his theatre became more and more experimental and esoteric in nature and Godot marked the beginning of this process. The play defied all the theatrical conventions, redefining what was thought possible and what impossible, in theatre.
1. The play defied the dramatic structure of the Freytag's triangle by presenting to us an apparently banal eventless surface, without an exposition, complication, climax, denouement and resolution.
2. The climactic content, the most awaited moment (Godot's arrival) was ommitted deliberately in search to create a form that could reflect the chaos of reality.
3. The lack of event meant an absolute verbalization of all action, creating great pressure on the dialogue to carry the drama on its shoulders, testing out the power of the text.
4. The play experimented with the genres of comedy and tragedy, falling in a problematic in-betweenness instead of Beckett's use of the expression 'tragi-comedy'.
5. It also experimented with least bit of scenography, costume, props and so on. The minimal was theatricalized.
6. The play experimented with a lot of performance traditions, especially the farce, the vaudeville and so on.
7. It was one of the first plays in 20th century to explore what is now called 'self-reflexive acting', whereby the actor's primary awareness is that of the actor. The play is about actors who improvise in the absence of a stable script.
8. It was also a landmark play in the sense that it converted a filling action (waiting) into the central if not the only action of the play. Apart from that, it had Vaudeville routines emphasizing the trivial actions in theatre.