A welcome break from the pre-packaged twinkle of the festive season, Little Jade Productions’s collection of spooky stories, poems and songs from across the world nevertheless sits awkwardly between recital and performance.
There’s no doubting the quality of the pieces, which range from a Grimm Tale to a performance of Nick Cave’s sinister ‘Red Right Hand’. But they are thrown together baggily, with seemingly no connection other than being eerie and favourites of the five-strong cast.
This makes for an uneven whole, not helped by some fussily stylised staging and unnecessary audience participation that occasionally distracts from the stories. This production would benefit from more faith in the simplicity of its premise: the elemental power of tales told around a fire.
But when the tale fits the format – an evocative re-telling of Angela Carter’s ‘Tiger’s Bride’ is great – the production musters quite a chill. And Florence + The Machine’s ‘My Boy Builds Coffins’ is crafted into a lovely, leery bit of gothic.
First published by Time Out