Last night we saw the Press Night of The Mystery of Edwin Drood, which was exciting as, as many of you may know, Charles Dickens died before finishing the story. I was very much looking forward to seeing how the story would end, having been told beforehand that it was left up to an audience vote – how exciting!
The show was beautifully executed, with every actor playing their role perfectly in moments that were both scripted and unscripted. I had much admiration for the fact that this cast have to deal with an audience who were completely unpredictable. Song sheets were provided for free and the audience were encouraged to sing along before the “official” start of the show. We had a great time singing and interacting with the cast – although we were not the most tuneful!
I always enjoy a “play within a play” format and this one was put together perfectly. Each character in the show then had a brief introduction as a character in the play within the play. It was easy to keep up with who was who and what they were doing. All the actors in this show were fantastic, but I had a few personal highlights. Wendi Peters as the Princess Puffer was both heartbreaking and hilarious at the same time, which I think is a very difficult feat to pull off. Natalie Day was fantastic as Edwin Drood and hilarious as Miss Alice Nutting. I also very much enjoyed Victoria Farley and Loula Geater as Rosa Bud and Helena Landless respectively – both had beautiful voices. Daniel Robinson was formidable and vocally impressive as Drood’s Uncle John Jasper and Denis Delahunt was perfection in his “impromptu” performance as the Mayor. There was not a weak link in this cast.
I thought the format of the show was excellent, and enjoyed making my choice on who the murderer was and watching the new twists and turns unfold within the show. We also got to pick who the lovers for the evening would be, which gave hilarious consequences.
All in all a fantastic night at the theatre that I would recommend to anyone who loves theatre. This show doesn’t take itself too seriously and is a joy to watch – a very enjoyable night out with twists and turns a-plenty and enough interaction to keep any audience member on their toes.
See this now!