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Frankenstein - Wilton’s Music Hall (Review)


Review by Shanna Schreuder

THIS ambitious one-hour stage version of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein strips back the classic tale to examine what maketh a monster?

For its adaptor, Tristan Bernays, it’s the lack of love given by Frankenstein to his creation, which leads the man to become a monster and the monster to become a man.

Performed in the stunning Wilton’s Music Hall, which was renovated to retain its historic character in 2013 after receiving Heritage Lottery Fund, this two-hander production sees George Fletcher play both Frankenstein and The Creature, while Rowena Lennon takes on The Chorus and minor characters – both giving strong performances throughout.

Using movement, lighting, music and the odd prop, they bring to life the different settings as the characters move from the lab to the forest and up through the Arctic.

The show begins with a bang as The Creature is jolted to life and immediately cast aside, left to roam the earth alone. Like a child, The Creature is unaware of his surroundings, but through trial and error he quickly learns what fruits to pick and how fire can warm as well as burn the flesh.

With a bit of audience interaction thrown in, he quickly picks up words and by studying Frankenstein’s journey he learns how to read and speak. This also leads him to understand the scientist’s anguish and disgust at his own work.

“Everything is related in them which bears reference to my accursed origin; the whole detail of that series of disgusting circumstances which produced it is set in view; the minutest description of my odious and loathsome person is given, in language which painted your own horrors and rendered mine indelible.”

Director Eleanor Rhode and movement director Tom Jackson Greaves have forged a small-scale show that successfully fills the impressive hall to maintain the tension needed for this hulking gothic piece. It is well worth making the time to see.

Frankenstein – from March 7 to March 18, 2017

Tickets: £10 – £20. To book visit the website-.

Times: 7:30pm plus selected 2:30pm, 6:30pm and 9pm shows.