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‘The Haunting’ – New Vic Theatre

Written by on 3 June 2024

‘The Haunting’ – The New Vic Theatre – Review by Hitmix Radio

Based on Stories from Charles Dickens – adapted by Hugh Janes

Wonderful photographs courtesy of Andrew Billington

 

Even as you walk in, the atmosphere is already set with darkness, fog, eerie music and someone sitting on stage in a chair – you know then that it is going to be a poignant and exciting!

Scary? Yes – absolutely!  I considered that maybe it wouldn’t be very scary in the theatre, and especially in the round.  But the scare factor was on point.  The loud bangs, the sudden fleeting appearances, books and various bits of the set moving on their own – all unexplained, also the understated background rumblings made it very creepy indeed.  The appearance of ‘the bride’ walking slowly was the things that nightmares are made of.  The old, cold, isolated mansion, the dark, lonely moor are well portrayed through the set, the clever lighting and sound effects.

A simple plot– a young book dealer David Filde (Richard Leeming) comes to value the contents of the library which are part of the estate of the late Lord Gray.  The new Lord Gray (David Ahmad) is selling up but is expecting a more senior member of the firm and lets his dissatisfaction be known.  As the intricate story unfolds it turns into a love story as much as a ghost story with some incredible dialogue expertly delivered by David Ahmad and Richard Leeming, both characters are very well cast and they work extremely well together.  Jessica Hole as Mary doesn’t appear much, but she is quite breath taking.

It is a wonderful portrayal of a true Victorian ghost story and I am sure that Dickens would be impressed by the interpretation.

All in all, a great supernatural story, taking us   through many different emotions and made better by a surprise turn of events at the end.  It is another must-see five-star production at the New Vic and is on until 15th June.

Here is Janes interview a few weeks ago with David and Richard …..