George Fletcher shines in this creative adaption of the gothic novel, Frankenstein. Fletcher’s manifestation of the titular monster comes to life on stage at the fabled Wilton’s Music Hall, the perfect nineteenth-century venue for this theatrical performance of Mary Shelley’s novel, published in 1818. Full of raw emotion and psychological twists, Frankenstein is an incredible theatrical journey of just one hour. The first quarter of the play was an international, human experience of birth without words. We watched the birth of Frankenstein through silent movement, like a ballet in which a baby evolves into a speaking and thinking man. In just sixty minutes, this performance takes the audience through ups and downs, happiness and sadness, with alternating feelings of protection and vulnerability.
The range of Fletcher’s acting ability is remarkable. How is he not already starring in a Hollywood blockbuster? Recently graduated from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, this young actor has a bright future ahead of him. In Frankenstein, his capacity for acting in a wide range of roles was evident as he personified the child-like monster who learned how to communicate through interaction with the audience. From there, Fletcher’s acting incorporated a flow of dance-like movement on stage and eventually evolved into a portrayal of Victor Frankenstein, the young scientist in Geneva, who created the grotesque creature.
Tristan Bernays has shaped an extremely creative adaptation of a complex novel. The directorial direction provided by Eleanor Rhode enabled Tristan Bernays’ adaptation to come to life on stage. With the use of sparse props, imaginative effects, and live music produced by the one-woman Chorus, Rowena Lennon, this play realizes ingenuity of production and vision of the two actors on stage to drag emotions out of the audience. For we, in the audience, this was an emotionally exhausting roller coaster, albeit interesting and intellectually stimulating. For a rewarding one-hour theatrical experience in one act, Frankenstein will surely deliver all that we theatregoers hope and anticipate. This is a superb example of a show of this type.
Review by Jennifer Daley
Frankenstein, a young scientist, brings a gruesome body to life. Cast out into a hostile world, Frankenstein’s creature searches for his true identity. But the pain of rejection and a broken promise changes everything. Vengeful, dangerous and in bloodthirsty pursuit of his maker, the creature threatens to destroy Frankenstein and the lives of everyone he loves.
Tristan Bernays’ vision of Mary Shelley’s masterpiece explores the timeless relationship between parent and child.
Reimagined by: Tristan Bernays (Offie award winning Teddy the Musical; The Bread and the Beer, Soho Theatre)
Directed by: Eleanor Rhode (Teddy, Southwark Playhouse; When We Were Women, Orange Tree Theatre; Toast, National Tour)
Movement: Tom Jackson Greaves (Kneehigh; Matthew Bourne; Romeo and Juliet, Watermill Theatre and National Tour)
7th March to 18th March 2017