The English Club went to the Spotlighters Theatre in Baltimore to see “A Sensation Novel: A Musical Play in Three Volumes” on Thursday, September 17. It is a musical play that expresses an author’s troubles with writing a novel. The characters are actually ghosts that were borrowed by the author from a spirit that the author strikes a deal with. The deal was this: the spirit would lend the author these characters and the author could conduct each to do whatever he wanted inside the novel. The characters, however, physically come out of the novel and interact as their actual selves at the end of each of the volumes that make up the play.
The play’s story line was interesting, engaging, surprising and highly entertaining. Each character had an original personality outside of the novel and disagreed with everything that the author wrote about him or her. They pursue their own personal desires whenever they are momentarily free from the novel’s binds. There are many twists and turns that the storyline takes that will keep an audience clinging onto their seats, waiting to see what will happen next.
Going to Spotlighters for the first time, I personally thought that the theatre’s set-up was really interesting. It is located in a basement of sorts, with a rounded stage, edged with pillars. The audience is placed in four sections surrounding the stage. This type of stage set-up assists with the audiences’ engagement and forces the actors to move around more instead of facing in mostly one direction. This, at first, caught me off guard, but in the end proved to be effective and resourceful.
“A Sensation Novel” is a play for a well-rounded audience, but probably not for children under the age of twelve or thirteen. However, it is hysterical and is guaranteed to have anyone laughing and singing along. I encourage you to go see it or any of the other plays being performed at the Spotlighters Theatre. You will not be disappointed.