To set the scene I can't do better than to quote the programme:" The events depicted here are very frightening and may be disturbing to those of a delicate nature. Hill House stands by itself against the hills, holding darkness within. It has stood for 130 years . . . silence lies steadily against the wood and stone, and whatever walks there walks alone."
The audience then enters a dimly-lit, mist-filled auditorium and gropes to find their seats which turn out to provide a viewpoint as if from behind the fireplace of a dark, wood-panelled drawing room. A corner of the fine set served, with the aid of ingenious lighting, for the bedroom scenes where Eleanor ( Andrea Jamieson) is spine-chillingly haunted by her mother. All 7 of the cast gave excellent performances and Harry Atkinson's very convincing "Dr Montague" should have a special mention. But the whole purpose of the play is to terrorise and top-billing for the evening must go to the sound effects. Sometimes sudden, making one jump out of one's seat, sometimes carefully orchestrated to create a sense of growing menace, sometimes seeming to involve the whole audience as they reverberated around the auditorium and always spot on for timing, these were a real triumph for designer Beverley Grover and operator Maria Dunn.
Their next production is Noel Coward's "Hay Fever", 23rd to 27th June.