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"The Hobbit" at the Edinburgh Playhouse (April 15 2000) Gavin Anderson

I went to see the stageplay of The Hobbit at the Edinburgh Playhouse on the 15th of April and must say it was a great success. I was a little apprehensive as two evenings before there had been a power cut in the middle of the performance and then audience apparently sat in darkness for about 30 minutes. During this time, the cast regailed them with impromptu songs (but were stuck when someone asked for a rendition of Flower of Scotland : ) Since they couldn't get the power working again, everyone had to leave and get their tickets refunded!

However, two nights later, everything went according to plan. The scenery was very effectively used. It moved and changed silently as if by magic to incorporate each scene. Since the cast had to fit the entire story into about 2 hours, they fairly whipped through the scenes, jumping in the blink of an eye from one to the next, barely giving the audience time to think. This made at times for gripping and intense viewing, but at other times you felt things needed a little bit more explaining than they gave. The magic used was spectacular, as were all the actors. I found Gollum to be especially good, with just the kind of voice you'd imagine him having. My only real complaint would be that Gandalf was a little too strict and didn't show much of the kindness one feels in the novel. However, all in all it was a very good effort at such a tricky undertaking. 9 out of ten!

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