07 September 2022
5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Last week I ventured down to the Southwark Playhouse to see Lazarus Theatre Company’s production of Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus.
The classic tragedy of course revolves around John Faustus, scholar and alchemist, who strikes up a deal with the devil, selling his soul for two decades of limitless power in the form of the demon Mephistopheles serving his every will.
This production stays close to the original text, with just a few modern amendments. Placing Faustus in his study where he laments the boredom and limitations inherent in studies of theology, medicine, science. He battles with his inner demon and angel, but is ultimately convinced by two magicians to follow his plan of conjuring a demon to make a deal with Lucifer. The scenes are dynamic and intense, and occasional interaction with the audience draws viewers deeper into the story, as demons, sins, and a variety of historical characters whirl across the stage in a myriad of different settings.
Preserving the humour of the comedic scenes, while sprinkling a good dose of darkness and dread throughout, the show is perfectly balanced, riveting, and a joy to watch.
Doctor Faustus is a very faithful adaptation, full of visceral terrors and elating delights, a whirlwind production of a beautifully tragic epic.
Don’t miss the short run of the show, it’s definitely worth your time!