The Hour of the Wolf - Malthouse Theatre Review
Sat 21 Oct 2023 - Sun 03 Dec 2023Malthouse Theatre Southbank, Melbourne
Have you ever lived in a small town?
The Hour of the Wolf
Natasha Herbert - Photo by Pia Johnson
co-created by Matthew Lutton and Keziah Warner gives audiences an opportunity to be part of the action in the small town of Hope Hill. Arriving just in time for Halloween, it's immersive theatre where the audience wears headphones and is guided through a maze of rooms and scenes to witness the folk of Hope Hill play out their version of events.
It's like a ‘choose your own adventure' novel where you can opt-in to your next experience as several rooms are ‘active’ at the same time. The brilliance of this concept is that each experience of the story is different. You can come back night after night and collect a new version of the story – if you can afford the ticket price! The Malthouse is running two 75-minute sessions per night back to back at 6.30 p.m. and 8.30 p.m.
The General Store - Keegan Joyce, Kevin Hofbauer, and Lucy Ansell - Photo by Pia Johnson
The mythology and politics of small-town communities are well documented in Australian literature and films like Wolf Creek
, Jasper Jones
, The Dry,
. The continued fascination with the inner workings of the locals often hard up against harsh conditions and landscapes rings true in The Hour of the Wolf
So what the hell happened in Hope Hill?
Well, it’s a mystery and you need to unravel the clues. You will meet characters and hear their stories, their version of events about what happened at 3 a.m. on the longest night of the year. Your choices will seal your fate.
Can you change your fate or Hope Hill's destiny?
The basic premise is on the longest night of each year Hope Hill relives a ritualistic event at 3 a.m. When the clock is reset to 3 a.m. it is possible another disappearance of a local will occur - unless you and the town folk intervene. Anything is possible.
The Laundromat - Emily Milledge - Photo by Pia Johnson
There's intrigue, deception, murder, blood in the laundromat, drugs on the dance floor, and lots of candles and bread. If you're lucky you may even be invited to partake in a ritual or a puzzle. But be quick, to avoid abandonment as the sliding doors close quickly. If you get nervous about ‘immersive’ or ‘participatory’ theatre – there is no need. The performance is discreetly patrolled by ushers and stage managers to assist audience members. It’s best to relax and enjoy the ride.
The show has an all-star cast – some of whom you may recognise from film, theatre, and television. So if you are a ‘star spotter’ you will be in your element. The performances are highly believable and at times the action is scary – not too scary – think more mystery and intrigue, than horror with a dash of dark humour.
The Potters Studio - Katherine Tonkin - Photo by Pia Johnson
The set design of each room is highly detailed which adds to the 'small town' experience. Check out the postcards in the General Store, the photos in the bedroom, and the many fascinating creations in the Potter’s Studio.
So grab your friends and visit Hope Hill before the clock strikes 3.am.
Jack Green and Kevin Hofbauer - Photo by PiaJohnson
266840 - 2023-10-20 23:56:47