Saturday, December 23, 2006

"The Canterville Ghost" - December 2006

Despite the cold, and it was very very cold inside Rosslyn Chapel, this was a heartwarming production based on the Oscar Wilde story. The cast of five and the production crew have put together a wonderful seasonal tale as an alternative to Panto. We'd seen Nonsenseroom's excellent version of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" at the chapel as part of the Edinburgh Festival and enjoyed it so much we immediately decided we had to make the trip back through for their Christmas show, and it was well worth the journey.

The production makes good use of the chapel's theatre-in-the-round format and the cast ensure they play to all sections of the audience. Sound effects are well put together to create any additional atmosphere required, although the chapel provides plenty of its own.

The story has been well adapted and includes some up to date references for an additional touch of humour - the Haka is inspired! The cast do a great job and Vic and her father held their accents well throughout and the cast didn't seem affected by the cold despite not having the benefit of the blankets and thick fleeces that the audience all came equipped with - these guys are prepared to suffer for their art.

Not sure how many people were surprised by the final sting in the tail/tale as it had been fairly well signposted, but once you clicked to it you realised how well the scenes had been put together and performed.

Already looking forward to see what they are going to come up with for 2007.

1 Heckle

Waldorf said...

We took a blanket and it was needed.

A ghost story becomes much more eerie when the performers' breath is visible - who needs dry ice.

Very enjoyable with both Nonsense Room and the volunteers at Rosslyn Chapel doing themselves proud. The festive mulled wine at the interval was much appreciated.

Although not faithful to the text of the original story (which I read after seeing the performance) it captured the spirit of the tale nicely. I think that by adapting it in the way it was stopped the tale becoming too cluttered.

What was also nice was the nods to the Wilde works within the play. I spotted references to The Picture of Dorian Gray, Lady Windermere's Fan, A Woman of No Importance, An Ideal Husband and The Importance of Being Earnest.