Theatre Review: The Mystery of Edwin Drood – The Arts Theatre, London ✭✭✭✭

The Mystery of Edwin Drood
  The Arts Theatre

Tuesday 22nd May 2012: ‘The Solve – It – Yourself Musical’, 2012 brings us the bicentenary of Charles Dickens birth and in an act of commemoration, his life and works are being celebrated across the globe. 

Photo by Claire Bilyard
Charles Dickens fifteenth novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, was unfinished at his death in 1870. Rupert Holmes’ musical adaptation of the novel gives the opportunity to finally realise a conclusion with the audience deciding how it should end.

Aria Entertainment’s production, with its music hall and pantomime traditions is full of colour, bright lights and great audience participation. The audience, encouraged by the actors of the ‘Theatre Royale’, make the traditional sounds of a pantomime by booing and hissing, cheering and clapping and are given the opportunity to sing along as the entertainment continues during the break.

The musical takes on the form of a play within a play, which is expertly presided over by the Chairman, brilliantly portrayed by Denis Delahunt.

The rest of the cast also make a fantastic contribution to the performance. They work very well together and although they all shine as part of the ensemble there are a few to watch out for in particular. 

Wendi Peters
Photo by Claire Bilyard
Wendi Peters, who is probably best remembered as Coronation Street’s Cilla Battersby-Brown, is cast as The Princess Puffer. Peters is well cast in this role and has been given great opportunity to show off her voice, which is synonymous to the period.

Loula Geater, in the role of Helena Landless, with her wonderful voice and remarkable accent probably steals the show.

Victoria Farley does well to portray the seemingly innocent and naive Rosa and Daniel Robinson, as John Jasper, pulls off a great performance adding some dark humour to the show.

Natalie Day adds to the Victorian drama with her portrayal of the title character Edwin Drood with energy and vitality. Director Matthew Gould has done a superb job and with the potential of a different ending at each performance, The Mystery of Edwin Drood is full of surprises, witty lines and lots of charm - be prepared to be entertained! 


Review by Unsa Chaudri

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Arts Theatre
Great Newport Street 
London WC2

Friday 18 May - Sunday 17 June

Press Night: Tuesday 22 May at 7.30pm

Tuesday - Saturday at 7.30pm
Thursday & Saturday at 3.00pm
Sunday at 4.00pm

Tickets: £10.00 - £40.00
Previews Friday 18 - Sunday 20 May all seats £20.00

Box office: 020 7836 8463