The Swedish fairy-tale about an unconventional love story garners positive reviews for its transatlantic transition to the stage.
Due to the popular demand the National Theatre of Scotland’s play Let the Right One In at New York’s St. Ann’s Warehouse has been extended with additional dates. After its successful run at London’s Apollo theatre in 2014, the company went on tour to the US and has been mesmerising American audiences since its opening on 20th January 2015.
Based on the John Ajvide Lindqvist’s 2004 novel, Let the Right One In merges the popular meme of vampire fiction and the Gothic in contemporised the setting to a 1980’s Sweden. This led to Tomas Alfredson‘s 2008 film adaptation and an English-language remake Let Me In (2010). The original stage version Låt den Rätte Komma In premiered in Uppsala in 2011, based on a script by Lindqvist. The story was adapted once more by Jack Thorne and directed by John Tiffany for the National Theatre of Scotland, starring Cristian Ortega as bullied schoolboy Oskar and Rebecca Benson as the enigmatic love interest Eli.
The director Tiffany best describes the multi-layered narrative, including transgenderism, paedophilia, and coming-of-age childhood trauma with the following words: “Often violence and horror are seen as being in the realm of something farcical. We were very aware of the potential pitfalls of what we were doing. But at its heart, Let the Right One In is a love story, which happens to be about a vampire. So I thought that if we focus on the love story, everything else would follow.”
Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black prove that horror is a welcome genre in theatrical circles. The Scottish interpretation of the Swedish horror hybrid has been greatly received with rave reviews:
“Extraordinarily imaginative…the play contains one of the single scariest moments ever seen onstage. Yet at its heart, LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is a stirring love story.” – Theatermania
“Just when you thought you’d had your fill of young vampires in love, along comes a ravishing little romance of the undead that’s guaranteed to warm – and break – your heart, even as it chills your blood.” – New York Times
“John Tiffany and choreographer Steven Hoggett stage a swift, bravura production on Christine Jones’s unit set of ghostly birch trees standing on snowy ground. Chahine Yavroyan’s lighting and Gareth Fry’s sound contribute to the gathering mood of isolation, desolation and dread.” – Time Out New York
Let the Right One In commences at St. Ann’s Warehouse in New York until 8th of May 2015