Thursday, March 31, 2005

Play — Dracula, a tale of undying love

I am in the chat room
I am crawling the web, searching for you,
My search engine is tracing you.
Where is your domain?

Thus, the ominous East-European voice of the Count greeted the audience as they took their seats for the World Premiere run of the new adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula, by Bryony Lavery.

I confess to having listened to that intro with some qualms — but they proved ill founded. Using e-mail and texts (shown on a large screen built into the imaginative set), it recaptured the epistolatory style of the original in a hip and now setting; and only occasionally veered into ironic self-reference.

It was a very faithful rendition of the text, albeit abridged (cutting out the Count's real-estate deals in London), more so than other more period takes from recent years. I especially enjoyed the updating of the "Bloofer Lady" to the "Buffy Lady" — cute, and not too knowing.

Highly recommended. Catch it at the West End if you can't do it this week!

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