This week the ADC main show is Equus. Directed by Pete Skidmore, and starring Jonah Hauer-King, Ben Walsh, Max Roberts, Katurah Morrish, Bea Svistunenko among others. The stage, choreography and lighting were really great. Daniel Karaj who designed the light deserves special mentioning. As it was a tech rehearsal, I only saw bits and pieces of the play. The story and the acting were really powerful. You can read more about it in the Varsity interview with Pete and Jonah.

Here are the first photos… If you click on them you can see them larger on the screen.

The safety curtain comes down and we are greeted by this intimate stable scene with Jonah Hauer-King (playing Alan Strang) and Max Roberts (playing the horse Nugget).
The play is set in a mental institution, and tells the story with a series of narrated flashbacks. Jonah and Ben Walsh (playing the psychologist Martin Dysart).
The chorus provides a strong backdrop, with chanting and peripheral movement emphasising the sick sacrificial story Ben recites. To the left of Ben is Bea Svistunenko playing Hesther Salomon.
One of the benefits of a tech rehearsal is that they do some scenes multiple times to get the choreography, light and sound right. This gives me a chance to reposition myself and try different angles.
Here I have walked up on stage, and am shooting from the side to get Jonah and Ben backlit. In the foreground you have the shoulder of one of the chorus members.
There are multiple layers to the stage, and I was torn between including Ben also to the left just out of the shot, or to move in closer like I did. Luckily this was another of the scenes that were repeated several times.
The riding scene, a static image does not do it justice. It lacks the motion of the group.
Jonah is brilliant as the mad and defiant Alan. In this scene the lighting nicely separates Jonah in the foreground and Ben in the background, creating depth. Here I was waiting for a stance that would emphasise the tape recorder in Jonah’s hand.
A bit of dramatic side lighting.
The play is very good at these narrated flashbacks. The chorus might look small in the background in the photos, but they play a really important part for the atmosphere of the play.
The horse’s choreography was well done, and graceful.
There are also a set of behind-the-scenes photos that I will share later, capturing some of the funny out of character moments. There are a few from this one, with the chorus literally rolling on the floor laughing.
The Stonehenge like set has a solid feel to it. The pillars are coated in concrete, giving them a great texture that shows.
Jonah and Max, with Bethan Davidson as the standing horse in the background. Her gaze and pose reinforces that of the men.
Offering in the stable. The right hand side was a bit dark and I had to lighten it in photoshop.
This was another scene that took a while to sort out where everyone should be, and it gave me several chances to get the photo. Yet again, the lighting of the stage is very well done.

This was just act one! Act two gets even more intense. If you want to see more, then probably best book it as soon as possible as this is bound to sell out. Update: Sorry they are sold out. I hope you already have your ticket!

The Cambridge Tab has posted not one, but a double review. The Cambridge Student review gave the play 8/10 and the Varsity review gave it 5 stars.

Here is the behind-the-scenes blog post with photos from the dressing room.

– Johannes


Alan Strang – Jonah Hauer-King
Martin Dysart – Ben Walsh
Frank Strang – Jamie Webb
Dora Strang – Georgie Henley
Jill Mason – Katurah Morrish
Chorus – Joe Jukes, Molly Frederikse, Alexandra Boulton, Daniel Rasbash, Megan Dunne, Gabriel Agranoff, Landi Wagner, Anna Clart, Elinor Lipman
Nurse – Amy Malone
Chorus – Eloise Poulton, Ben Hawkins
Hesther Salomon – Bea Svistunenko
Horseman/Nugget – Max Roberts
Chorus – Kirsten Lees
Harry Dalton – Robert Thomas
Chorus – Bethan Davidson, Olivia Stamp

Timpani – Robin Otter

Production Team
Director – Pete Skidmore
Producer – Laura Sedgwick, Isla Tyrrell
Choreographer – Lucy Moss
Mask Designer – Emily Newton
Deputy Stage Manager – James Wright
Technical Director – Eleanor Brug
Composer – Ryan Rodrigues
Costume – Matilda Wickham
Assistant Producer – Joseph Spencer, Jack Rowan
Lighting Designer – Daniel Karaj
Sound Designer – Pete Skidmore
Assistant Stage Manager – Issy Gately
Stage Manager – Victoria Collins
Head Designer – Jessica Poon
Assistant Lighting Designer – Lanikai Krishnadasan Torrens
Photographer – Johannes Hjorth
Publicity Designer/Photographer – Angharad Hengyu Owen

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