Ghost Stories, the worldwide hit production is back at the Lyric Hammersmith and is a show that we highly recommend. Written by the highly talented Jeremy Dyson (The League of Gentlemen) and Andy Nyman (Trick of The Mind), the pair have created a play that comes with warnings about its psychological manipulation and chilling scenes.
The slick and well-directed show follows three ghost stories from the old school vaults. One includes a night watchman in an abandoned factory that was once a mental asylum, another follows the story of a young man whose car breaks down in the woods in the darkest of nights and the other portrays an expectant father who perceives something disturbing in the nursery.
And then there is Professor Goodman, played by Simon Lipkin (Guys and Dolls), who brings in some interesting scenes surrounding the nature of fear and belief, and suggests the audience has come to ‘play a game with that fear.’ But is that it? Or are there many more terrifying surprises throughout the play? You will have to check it out yourself to find out.
I can tell you now; this truly is a very fun game of fear. We all like to push the boundaries of normality and fear and like to test ourselves on what we can take mentally and sometimes physically. That is exactly what this production is. It is a thrill ride from start to finish; it helps you to revisit those spooky dreams you may have had once upon a time and also allows you to live out the fears you wish you did not think of.
I was also pleased to see Preston Nyman (Crooked House) playing the role of Simon Rifkind alongside Richard Sutton (The Cow Play) who plays the remarkable Mike Priddle. And finally, we have Garry Cooper (King Lear) who does a wonderful job of playing Tony Matthews.
As you could possibly expect, the genius writing of Jeremy Dyson is very prominent throughout and if you are a fan of The League of Gentlemen you will be sure to pick out some of his themes and ideas quite easily; and it makes for a production that audiences will love in a cruel, twisted and spooky manner. Since its original showing at The Lyric Hammersmith, Ghost Stories has become a cult phenomenon around the globe and it feels like it is back home, where it belongs. From start to finish we were swept away with adrenaline, fear and the constant need to look over our shoulders. But even beyond the incredible story writing, you are dragged in by direction, lighting and staging that all help to pull you into the stories full of psychological fear and terror.
Of course, only go and see Ghost Stories if you are brave enough; only the strongest and bravest will dare!