There are some shows that have barely any meaning and are amazing. There are some shows that have so much meaning and are also amazing. Then there are the shows that fall into this in-between space with maybe both and maybe neither. A Ghost Tale, currently showing at The Basement Theatre, falls into this latter confusing category.
Written by Benjamin Teh and inspired by the works of Edgar Allen Poe and Roald Dahl, A Ghost Tale is sort of a collection of scary stories. Presumably aimed to spook the audience with a touch of inner observation.
The show opens with a collection of friends bursting through the doors. Seemingly intoxicated, they soon decide to share horror stories with each other. A pretty decent premise, the idea allows for a variety of relatively short scenes. This element of the show is definitely successful, as it engages the audience and keeps them interested in what’s to come.
The following stories are fill of shock and terror, as well as some questionable content choices. The first story involves incest and child abuse, a rather heavy topic to open with. The next few stories seems to bounce between humour and horror. Some are more fictional with demons and monsters, others are quite deep with personality changes and mirrors.
The most successful story is undoubtedly a tale about a boy and his fear of apparently very real bed bugs. Alex Dyer delivers a successful performance as the fear-ridden child, with the rest of the performers (Emma Eglinton, James Maeva, Rhema Sutherland, Travis Graham, Nicole Steven) playing bed bugs.
A Ghost Tale is a decent show, not incredibly scary but decent nevertheless. And really, with the very recent horrifying results of the US election, maybe a little-less-than-scary is what we all need.
A Ghost Tale runs until this Saturday. Tickets are available here.