When most people think of Frankenstein, they think of a tall, green monster with bolts through his neck. However, Book-It Repertory Theatre creates a performance that goes beyond that. Director David Quicksall, who also directed Moby Dick and Dracula, puts together a performance well-worth its iconic source material, creating a spooky yet enticing tale of life and death — and what that means.
The classic story of Victor Frankenstein (Connor Toms) is known world-wide: A mad scientist, obsessed with blurring the lines between life and death, creates a monster (Jim Hamerlinck), which proceeds to wreak havoc on his life, tearing apart his family and everything he knows.
Fans of the novel will likely enjoy this show, due to the fact that the show’s dialogue is made up entirely of direct quotes and lines of narration from the original Mary Shelley novel. Book-It has a very unique style of theater in which all of the spoken words are taken directly from a literary text. Instead of doing an injustice to the horror feel of the show, once the viewer has gotten used to the style, the narration often doesn’t feel out of place or strained. It’s able to add background and emotion to the characters without feeling cheesy.
The sets and lighting are beautifully done, staying very simplistic while adding to the creepy feel of the play. Toms’ Victor Frankenstein strikes the perfect balance of being likeable yet absolutely insane. The actors are able to make the audience laugh with an over-dramatic childhood sword fight, squirm while Dr. Frankenstein chops the arm off of a body, and stay on the edge of their seats until the very end of the performance, when the haunting final visual will stick with you long after you go home for the night.
Frankenstein; or, the Modern Prometheus
Book-It Repertory Theatre
February 12- March 9