The Hound of the Baskervilles

Date 31st January 2020
Society Present Stage Theatre Company
Venue Theatr Colwyn
Type of Production Play
Director Lara Crawford

Report

Author: Lyn Emmerson

I am sure Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would have delighted with this production of one of his most famous stories. At the onset I must congratulate Director Lara Crawford, as this piece was a debut for her as Director in the field of Drama, and with an experienced cast, she served up an excellent production. Having said that, I always feel this group are most adventurous in their choice of play as they have a varied repertoire of past productions, and are not afraid to take on a new challenge.

One rarely gets the ‘wow’ factor when entering the auditorium, but one could hear the ‘wows’ as the audience took to their seats, whilst observing the magnificent set design and construction. This put us in the mood to hear this story. Back stage crew, lighting and sound technicians worked well as a team to bring about scene changes, without a hitch, together with all the eerie howls of the Hound which periodically filled the auditorium. Costumes and hair styles were very much of the period.

A very creditable characterisation from Gavin Baldwin of the slightly eccentric, fast talking upper middle class pipe smoking Sherlock Holmes. Gavin coped well with the script, his timing was impeccable and the script pacey throughout. Andrew Poynton brought us a perfect Dr Watson, a complete contrast to Holmes, with his babbling and forgetfulness, Andrew was spot on in this role. Richard Williams was cast well as the upper-crust Sir Henry Baskerville who, as heir to the Baskerville fortune, was the main target for the Hound. Judith Williams was convincing as the overworked maid Perkins, whilst Karen Shepherd’s interpretation of Mrs Barrymore the Housekeeper, was faultless. Carole Lauren was very comfortable in the role of Lady Agatha Mortimer and maintained her decorum from her first entrance. I liked the contribution from Helen Thomas as Kathy Stapleton and Lorna Hughes as Laura Lyons who both brought a freshness to the piece. Good support from Landon Sweeney as Barrymore, Samuel Faulkner as Jack Stapleton, and Andrew Thomas as Seldon, not forgetting David Crawford as the ill-fated Sir Charles at the beginning of the play. SHH – no more give aways!!

It was evident from the standing ovation the company received from an enthusiastic audience, the play was well received, and the production took the company to another level of Drama in the area. Congratulations and thanks PSTC, a super entertaining evening.