HORROR | London, Peacock Theatre

You’ve never seen anything like this. Horror is a ballet, a pastiche clip show, a magic show, a stage combat show, and a moving piece about parental child abuse, all rolled into an intense, wordless eighty minutes. The effect is gripping, challenging, and often very scary.

The story follows a young woman and her two male friends, who one stormy night find an old house, which triggers frightening flashbacks of the young woman’s abusive childhood. The lines between reality and fantasy begin to blur as her friends become possessed one moment and comforting the next, brutally mutilated one moment and eating soup the next. It’s the perfect backdrop against which to explore the genre of horror in all its glory.

There are many things which separate Horror from other similar shows like The Woman In Black and Ghost Stories, perhaps the most striking being the storytelling through dance, and a killer (pre-recorded) soundtrack. But one of the most compelling is the non-stop parade of illusions. Within the simple ‘haunted house’ set, people and objects perpetually appear, disappear, and float, along with gory and stomach-churning full-body effects.

There are only eight actors, but there are many more characters, including those beyond the grave and those beyond this dimension, and the effect is convincing and epic in scope. As the story unravels, audiences experience the emotional heart of the show, which moves towards a feeling of resolution and redemption. It is difficult to tell what is real, and what is just hommage, but this darkly surreal piece remains a blast for horror-aficionados and newbies alike.

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