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By Dave Massey twitter.com.BrumHour
This production contains very loud noises and jump scares.
Review: The Woman In Black at Wolverhampton Grand
⭐⭐⭐⭐A Suitably Spooky Story.
Directed by Robin Herford Written by Susan Hill
In the 1950s Arthur Kipps (Malcolm James) has written a very long play/monologue about a previous strange and curious experience, he meets an unnamed actor (Mark Hawkins) to develop the story into something more presentable. We see excerpts of this story presented in fairly short acts.
This classic ghost story, with some very tense moments it features just two actors and plenty of props, curtains and mood lighting.
There was some nervous laughter in the audience at different points, and the theatre becomes very, very silent at different moments. The story was a lot of fun to see played out and really enjoyed the audience reaction.
Performance wise, Malcolm James switches from being a nervous storyteller to characters within the story with ease and it is always easy to see which character he has transformed into. Mark Hawkins actor in contrast is confident at the start, but then, he becomes the nervous storyteller as the story progresses.
At two hours, including interval, this story cracks on at a pace and feels like every moment is utilised for progressing the haunting tale. There are some slightly ham-filled moments, which fit a ghost story. I think these days, we are more used horror stories, and ghost stories almost have vanished but they certainly have their place and this proves it.
A suitably spooky story, The Woman In Black is at Wolverhampton Grand until 9th September 2023. Discover what is coming up at Wolverhampton Grand here: grandtheatre.co.uk/whats-on. The Woman in Black is currently touring the UK until June 2024. Details here: thewomaninblack.com/tour-dates.