The Enchanted

The Enchanted is a show all about disconnection, both in its subject matter and the way that it’s performed. It is also a hard-hitting and a compassionate look at prisoners on Death Row, based on a novel by Rene Denfeld.

Children’s voices chatter on the sound system: the overwhelming effect is that of dreamlike dread

The set is dark and bare apart from the columns of bird cages the actors move between. The movement of the actors evokes both the jerks and twitches of marionettes and the fluidity of dancers. There are a couple of real marionettes brought out during flashback scenes while children’s voices chatter on the sound system: the overwhelming effect is that of dreamlike dread.

This is all carefully orchestrated for the story being told. Arden, our narrator, has committed crimes that are unspeakable even for his inmates, the worst of criminals. Nonetheless, he is someone who sees enchantment in the walls of the underground prison, and hope in the snatches of sky seen from the only window. He weaves us a tale about his fellow prisoner York, and The Lady, an investigator determined to understand and help him. We see her delving into the horrors of York’s past and some of the characters along that path, the jerking dances of the cast punctuating the narration and dialogue. Even when interacting, the actors never fully face each other. Since the audience is on three sides of the stage, this is pragmatic, but it also adds to the uneasy disconnectedness. Words and actions skate over each other. At times, this technique highlights the unspoken things in our interactions, such as a doctor’s aggressive reaction to the investigator becoming expressed physically even as the conversation remains at the level of the polite, everyday discourse.

This spellbinding story will refuse to let you go. It is a play with a message to tell about the treatment of human beings and the possibilities of redemption, and it delivers this with skill.

Reviews by Fiona Mossman

Gilded Balloon at the Museum

The Snow Queen

Assembly George Square Studios

Sarah Kendall: Shaken

Underbelly, Cowgate

The Hours Before We Wake

Gilded Balloon Teviot

Wendy Wason: Tiny Me

theSpace @ Surgeons Hall

The Female Question

Paradise in Augustines

Lest We Forget


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Are monsters born or are they created? A mute prisoner sits on death row in a maximum security prison. He watches and he listens. And he wonders – how do we stop men like me from happening? An investigator unravels unspeakable crimes – she does not let men go to their deaths without a fight. When you walk on death row, you look for the light, for that scrap of sky. Pharmacy presents an imaginative adaptation of Rene Denfeld's debut novel reflecting on themes of evil, punishment, clemency and redemption.

Most Popular See More

Tina - The Tina Turner Musical

From £12.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Phantom of the Opera

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Mousetrap

From £30.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Frozen the Musical

From £36.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Mamma Mia!

From £15.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £42.00

More Info

Find Tickets