Amidst murder, mayhem, and madness, Spotlighters’ Jekyll and Hyde is a dark and mysterious performance that electrifies.
Spotlighters concluded its run of the memorable yet horrifying tale capitalizing on a month long run in the theater. Director Fuzz Roark, musical director Michael Tan, and their inspiring cast succeeded in pleasantly terrifying their entire audience.
Lighting director Allison Ramer and costumer Laura Nicholson effectively invited their audience into the dark world in which this play takes place. The thrilling energy of the cast brings life to a complicated musical that delivers justice and authenticity with a traditional and theatrical performance.
Set in 1888 London, the small stage is dimly illuminated and its compactness provides an intimate relationship between the performance and audience. The actors are so close that each song performed is loud and up in your face that the audience can do nothing but be engulfed in the passionate story they are sharing.
Dr. Jekyll (Ryan Wagner) commands a gripping presence on stage as well as his tantalizing romances with both Lucy Harris (Renata Hammond), and his bride to be Emma Carew (Patricia Hengen).
As the terror of Hyde escalates, as does the strong music played by the band, who successfully jolts the audience to absolute silence during the most frightening moments.
Although the theater presents its actors with limited space to maneuver, they bring excitement and life to a play that desperately needs it. The horse and buggy dialogue combined with a lackadaisical energy of the ensemble does not outweigh the intensity of the show’s leading actors, whom behind the dynamic performance of Ryan Wagner keeps the audience attentive.
Unfortunately the Spotlighters performance of Jekyll and Hyde has now concluded. However, for those who truly appreciate a production company that is committed to presenting great works of theater with the dedication, critical due diligence, and respect it deserves should certainly give this theater a chance.
Jekyll and Hyde
817 Saint Paul Street
Reviewed by Dylan Hans
Dylan Hans is currently a Baltimore based writer interested in film, theater, and law. Dylan is not only devoted to writing about art and culture, but also a passionate sports fan.