The Haunting of Hill House

Date 16th June 2017
Society Washington Theatre Group
Venue Washington Arts Centre
Type of Production Play
Director Calum Price

Report

Author: Foster Johnson

The one thing you can expect from the Washington Theatre Group is the unexpected. So it was again with their latest production of the Haunting of Hill House. They are always prepared to test the boundaries and engage the audience with something different from the norm and this fine performance was no different.

Based on the novel of Shirley Jackson and adapted by F. Andrew Leslie this atmospheric ghost story tells the tale of research into the paranormal events at Hill House by a group of disparate characters lead by Dr. Montague, a specialist in the field, and how they are all eventually drawn ever deeper into the clutches of the spirits who inhabit the house.

The cast of seven was cleverly chosen and all made telling contributions to the production. Angela Marshall took the lead role of Eleanor Vance and played the highly disturbed and fragile character to a “T”. Rachel Neill was suitably in character as the doom laden and morose house keeper Mrs Dudley, whilst Ann-Marie Pitcairn gave a fine interpretive performance in the role of Theodora. John Cairns interpretation in the role of Dr.Montague was well thought out as he played the role in an understated manner which counterbalanced perfectly with the mayhem that was going on around him.

Matthew Lowe as Luke Sanderson and Peter Wilson as Arthur Parker are two of the stalwarts of the Group and can be relied upon to deliver no matter what role they take. They did so again as the carefree inheritor of the House and psychic researcher respectively.

Finally as special mention for Marie Lovell as Mrs Montague the wife of the Doctor and a fellow researcher. Think of the Margaret Rutherford character in Blythe Spirit and that was Marie .

In conclusion for a show of this nature you require some excellent stage effects, lighting and mood music both on and off set to make it work. Well the show had them too. Well done to the Crew and those who devised them.