Photographs courtesy of Oleg Katchinsky.
Hunch Theatre companies new play A Hero of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov has been adapted by Oliver Bennett and Vladimir Shcherban. Last night saw the opening performance at the Arcola Theatre in Studio 2, on the 21st November 2018.
Two resting soldiers Pechorin and Grushnitsky begin a competition to win over the affections of Princess Mary, in the small dull spa town they are both residing in. It descends through the play into a cruel tragedy, where there are no winners.
Oliver Bennetts portrayal of Pechorin was a role of great stamina. His energy, passion and ability to engage with his fellow actors and break through the fourth wall in smooth transitions showed how accomplished he is an actor.
Scarlett Saunders and James Marlowe have been well cast and play additional characters from their main roles. Each morphing from one to the other without stopping the flow of the play.
I thought the use of the novels front cover picture as seen in the second photograph above was a brilliant use of props and allowed the novel to form part of the play. This created an additional character of the Doctor who talks to Pechorin during the play, both parts are voiced by Bennett.
This 70-minute play combines love, humour, heartbreak, death, cheating and mind games in an emotionally fuelled performance. Studio 2 is a smaller venue where the audience is intimately involved throughout, one lady was covered in water when the Princess throws a glass over Pechorin.
This was my first introduction to Russian Romanticism writer, poet and painter Mikhail Lermontov. Upon watching tonights performance I am planning to read the novel and investigate the work of this writer further.
Showing from 19th November-15th December 2018.
Tickets are available at,
24 Ashwin St,
Tel 020 7503 1646