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Review: Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde at IRT

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Ryan Artzberger and Kevin Cox in 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.' - ZACH ROSING
  • Zach Rosing
  • Ryan Artzberger and Kevin Cox in 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.'

The Indiana Repertory Theatre opened its 41st season last week with crisp storytelling in a modern theatrical take on Stevenson’s gothic novella. Jeffrey Hatcher’s engaging adaptation recasts the tale in three dimensions with shifting narrative voices, direct address and ensemble character work, with the part of Hyde, notably performed by four different actors.

These elements are coupled with quick-witted direction from Risa Brainin, whose subtle staging tactics feed our sense of gruesome wonder. Plus, Russell Metheny’s industrialized scenic design is a well balanced nod to both the period of the story and the contemporary theatrical techniques used to tell it.

Indianapolis fave Ryan Artzberger impresses as the straitlaced, respectable Dr. Jekyll, though he's nearly outshone by Kevin Cox’s Hyde. As these two heavy hitters face off in the thrilling final scene, they bring our sense of suspense to its boiling point. In all, a wonderful start to Indy’s theater season. Through Sept. 30 at Indiana Repertory Theatre

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