Not Dead Enough
The Bristol Hippodrome
Monday 27th February – Saturday 4th March 2017
Award-winning EastEnders’ actor Shane Richie, MTV presenter Laura Whitmore and Coronation Street’s Stephen Billington star in this world premiere murder mystery production. Not Dead Enough is the third of Peter James’ international bestselling Roy Grace novels which have been published in 36 languages and sold over 18 million copies worldwide.
NOT DEAD ENOUGH SYNOPSIS
NOT DEAD ENOUGH REVIEW
The stage is mostly divided into three simple sets: a mortuary; an interview room and a police office. This layout is effective as the areas can either be used simultaneously or in series so there’s very little need for set changes, therefore only the slightest interruption to the story’s flow between scenes. At one point the bereaved suspect is waiting in the interview room while work continues in both the police office next door and the mortuary behind, emphasising the waiting game he’s playing. There’s barely any scenery change throughout and the basic props and flimsy door in a freestanding frame give the set an am-dram feel.
From our seats near the back of the stalls in row S, I find the sound levels low, particularly at the start. A combination of this and muted stage lighting might explain why I find it hard to engage with the action to start with but as the play progresses, particularly in act two, the plot begins to draw me in.
Even though I’m one of those annoying people who often guesses the ending of stories too soon, the story takes an interesting turn and I don’t ‘solve’ this case until well into the second act.
The subtle, eerie use of stringed instruments, creating tension at all the right moments, is balanced by moments of humour, such as when a corpse unexpectedly returns from the dead ….
The show opens with what resembles a twisted sex game and the ongoing theme of violent murder and rape are enough to convince me not to bring the children to see Not Dead Enough any time soon!
We don’t see many plays at The Hippodrome and I’m not expecting the feel good factor which follows a good musical, but I’m not wowed by this production in this setting. Perhaps if we were sitting closer to the front, if the volume was a little louder or if the theatre was smaller I could have soaked up the atmosphere and enjoyed it more. That said, it does warm up in second half, the story is clever enough to make the outcome hard to predict and perhaps most importantly, the husband enjoys watching something completely different!
I’ve just checked and ticket sales seem to be going very well so it looks like a lot of theatre goers fancy a spot of murder mystery. Click here for more information or to book tickets to Not Dead Enough or other shows at The Bristol Hippodrome. (affiliate link)
NOT DEAD ENOUGH PERFORMANCES
Monday 27th February – Saturday 4th March
Evenings at 7.30pm
Matinees on Wed & Sat at 2.30pm
Tickets from £17.50
Concessions available at certain performances
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DISCLOSURE: WE RECEIVED TICKETS TO NOT DEAD ENOUGH FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS REVIEW. ALL OPINIONS ARE MY/OUR OWN. POST CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS