© Tristram Kenton

This was one of the first shows I saw when I moved to London. We got a great deal on tickets, they were just £15 and we were second row!!

The Woman in Black is the second longest running play in the West End, with Mousetrap taking the lead. Running for over 30 years, there’s a reason why, it’s fantastic. Based on Susan Hill’s gothic horror novel written in 1983, the show follows the story of Arthur Kipps (Terence Wilton).

The show begins with an old Arthur Kipps attempting to tell his story, however he produces a very monotone mumble. The Actor (Max Hutchinson) then declares he will take over and play the part of Arthur Kipps, to act out the story. Arthur is a young solicitor that must represent his firm at Alice Drablow’s funeral and then go to sort through her property, the secluded and desolate Eel Marsh House.

© Tristram Kenton

Arthur sees a Woman in Black, and tries to speak to the locals about this – however they are all reluctant to speak of this. That is where I will leave the info on the plot, no spoilers here!

The story remains true to the original, but adds the concept of a play within a play, as the Actor is acting out Arthur’s story. This play, the staging, everything made it feel so atmospheric, as if you were really there.

Max and Terence in their roles really held the audience and were incredibly effective with their power. All they had to do was look in a certain direction and you span round expecting to see the Woman in Black. Expect to feel tense, expect to jump and expect to be entertained. This play would be a great one to go to with someone that is not that into theatre, as I think a wide variety of people would enjoy this!

This play kept me on the edge of my seat throughout. We laughed, we jumped, it was jolly good!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Seen in November 2021 – with the Cast including; Terence Wilton (Arthur Kipps), Max Hutchinson (The Actors). Understudies: Chris Gilling & Raymond Rose.

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