Review – The Fall of the House of Usher

By Bob Evans

Stand up and cheer for the trio of actors who undertake the dark but creative mind-set of one of Edgar Allen Poe’s classic terror tales, “The Falll of the House of Usher,” one of his many stories that adapted into film.

The talented trio takes the audience into the darkness and melancholy of the Usher family and the stately mansion known as The House of Usher.  The family who preserved their bloodline with inbreeding and incest find the last two living Ushers trapped in their own lair.

The gloom and doom of the house and the inhabitants ensnares the best and only friend of Roderick Usher (Ken Sandberg) after he requests his friend (Zack Chaykin) to come and help him understand the undiagnosed illness of his sister, Madeline (Heidi Van).  Madeline appears dead but then erupts in fits of madness rage.  Madeline appears the victim, but is she the victim, or is it Roderick?  Or, could the friend/visitor become the Usher’s victim?

Adaptor-Director Gavin Robertson ‘s haunting vision of “The Fall of the House of Usher” definitely resonates.  The original music by composer Danny Bright adds to the atmosphere of doom and foreboding.The beauty and diabolical description of Edgar Allen Poe adapt well to this play as the narrator explores Poe’s prose.  His vocabulary and dark motif come alive with the narration.

Fans of Edgar Allen Poe will enjoy this version. The actors deliver strong physical and dramatic performances with great physical and dramatic presence throughout.  Their elocution as they speak Poe’s words takes the audience into the dark recesses of Poe’s thoughts.

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