Review of The Woman in Black
By Andrew Harrison - Arts critic
THE WOMAN In Black, adapted for the stage by Stephen Mallatratt from the Susan Hill novel is one of those productions which gets better every time I see it. The story tells of a lawyer, Arthur Kipps played by Robert Goodale, who is obsessed with a curse that he encountered and needs to share with his family and friends of the spectre of ‘The Woman in Black'. Desperate to tell his story as a warning to others he engages a young actor, played by Daniel Easton, to help him. Arthur Kipps begins his story in a monotone uninspiring way, but with the help of the actor is soon expertly creating the characters needed to tell his story as The Actor takes on the role of the younger Kipps and Kipps plays all the other roles in this chilling ghostly tale.
Directed by Robin Hereford, as every production has been since the show was first performed in 1987 at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough, it remarkably still remains as fresh as the first time I saw it. The quality of the acting and the script capture the attention of the audience perfectly and produce a master class of how to build up suspense through the delivery of lines and the clever use of minimal props, sound and lighting effects. The screams from the audience, show just how well this works and it never fails to send a shiver down my spine. This is still one of the most terrifying productions you will see on stage.
Darlington Hippodrome until Saturday 23rd November.