As the audience enter Ernest is sitting and watching the girl of his dreams, which he does every night. Then, suddenly, the play delivers an alarming shock; we know this mock gothic horror is out to stop us sleeping tonight.
Conjuring clever lighting, it’s smart, atmospheric and draws us easily into Ernest’s creepy and obsessive world.
Les Enfants Terrible are a fairly young company who have already secured themselves a sparkling reputation. Their set design adds beautifully to this small, slick ensemble show. Conjuring clever lighting, it’s smart, atmospheric and draws us easily into Ernest’s creepy and obsessive world.
A talented cast of four (Anthony Spargo, David Ahmed, Laura Matthews and Rachel Dawson) weave a Hitchcock and Edgar Allen Poe-esque tale based on a short story by Artistic Director Oliver Lansley (co-writer of TV cult hit Whites and Sky Atlantic’s current series, Mr Sloane). They move seamlessly in and out of characters, taking turns to narrate, mixing live music, storytelling and physical theatre.
Tension is built superbly throughout the tale, but sadly the end was a little underwhelming. After all that work to get us to the edge of our seats, I felt a little cheated.
Luckily, this assured company is touring Ernest so make sure you catch him at a theatre near you - just make sure your companion isn’t of a nervous disposition.