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Edward Scissorhands | The Lowry

Edward Scissorhands was originally a very successful Tim Burton directed gothic romance film released in 1990. In 2005, world renowned choreographer Sir Matthew Bourne adapted the piece into a contemporary dance performance which has gone on to tour the world. In contrast to the original film, the piece is performed entirely through the medium of music and dance, with the plot staying fairly true to the movie. The story set in the 1950’s follows Edward, who is created by an eccentric inventor due to the loss of his own son, trying to adapt to suburban life with only scissors for hands.

Matthew Bourne is perhaps most recognised for his unique interpretations of ‘Swan Lake’ and ‘The Nutcracker’ and whilst Edward Scissorhands isn’t an overhaul of the original story, the piece brings a unique, modern interpretation to the cult classic tale. Bourne has created a beautifully poignant work of art yet again by taking a story that is beloved by many and translating it to the stage majestically. His award-winning company New Adventures have consistently garnered their plaudits creating work that alters perception telling stories without words and this is no exception. It truly is a skill to be able to portray a story emotionally as-well as making the audience laugh without a single word being spoken.

The New Adventures Company represent several families set within the fictional town of ‘Harmony USA’ showcasing a diverse and initially inclusive community. Each of the families have their own visual identity as well as unique characteristics which were clear throughout the piece. It’s so important to see real families portrayed on stage and a welcome addition to the production this year is the depiction of same sex male parenting. The modernisation of the production is testament to how far society has come when presenting underrepresented minorities on stage.

Such a physically demanding role that is Edward Scissorhands, the titular role is shared between two performers throughout this tour. On the night present Liam Mower excelled at bringing Edward’s innocence and vulnerability to the stage. With themes running throughout such as loneliness and isolation Mower’s portrayal through dance was a sight to behold. The interpretation conveyed the uniqueness of the social exile the character faces through prejudice.

Danny Elfman’s original motion picture score is complimented by Terry Davies’ new music and arrangements. The music is an elegant accompaniment to the story which evoked the audience with appropriate emotional responses. Whilst the arrangements helped elicit sentimental value from the piece it was missing an element of grandeur. The production could really benefit from the addition of an orchestra to play the score which would further elevate this production considerably. Lez Brotherston’s impressive set design depicted each scene location admirably. From the gothic inside of the castle where Edward is born to the topiary garden that comes to life, each scene is meticulously thought through. Video and projection design (Duncan McLean) paired with the staging gloriously adding magnitude to the expansive set.

This production returns to Salford nine years after previously playing here and it sets up their Christmas season perfectly. Those familiar with the film will know parts of the story are based at Christmas and watching the snow falling at The Lowry Theatre really got us into the Christmas spirit.

Edward Scissorhands is an extraordinary and lavish production exploring creativity and acceptance. Cutting edge theatre at its best. For more information and tickets, you can follow the link here.


AD | gifted tickets in return for an honest review | photography provided by the Theatre


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