Mary Shelley's Frankenstein is generally regarded as the first Science Fiction novel and last week's staging of an adaptation at the Queen Mother Theatre was truly excellent.
Frankenstein himself (Peter Matthews) spent almost the whole performance on stage, as he narrates his tale to Captain Walton (Gareth Martin). This adaptation by Patrick Sandford had some glaring holes for anyone who knows the original Shelley text, but if you can get over the creature 'finding' his creator's journal lying on the stage, it works well.
Clearly, a huge amount of work went into the staging and Director Jon Brown created a dark and atmospheric evening that raised few laughs. The creature himself (Greg Jones) was played with admirable sympathy, far from the Hollywood monster most of us know.
But, for me, the outstanding work for the evening was the original music, composed by Greg Breden. Filmic and huge in its scale, the music enhanced the atmosphere and turned this into a truly outstanding piece of theatre.
The Queen Mother Theatre is used to selling out on most of its runs and if anything has taught me to get my tickets earlier next time, it was this. While this performance has run its course, it's clear that there is talent aplenty at QMT - and all from people who do it solely for the love of it. We are fortunate to have this resource in Hitchin and long may it continue with this strength of performance.
Member since: 31st May 2012
Writer and sax player. Brought up in Hitchin and - apart from uni and some ensuing madness of life in London - I've always lived here.