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Home » Review: 2:22 A Ghost Story At The Lyric Theatre In London

Review: 2:22 A Ghost Story At The Lyric Theatre In London

Since opening in the West End in 2021, 2:22 A Ghost Story has haunted the Noël Coward, The Gielgud, The Criterion, and now inhabits the Lyric on Shaftesbury Avenue – an impressive roster of theatres for a West End debut.

It’s no surprise, Danny Robins’ contemporary script is smart and savvy, combining domestic dinner-party drama with paranormal activity.

2:22 A Ghost Story is running at The Lyric Theatre until April 23 2023. (Helen Murray) (Image: Helen Murray)

Popstar Cheryl Cole takes the stage for the first time as rattled new mother Jenny, and she’s suitably hacked off that there appears to be a ghost in her baby’s bedroom.

It’s a gloriously British set-up, heavy with class and sexual tension – one well-heeled couple dines with another in their newly renovated home.

University pals Lauren (Louise Ford) and Sam (Scott Karim) are satisfyingly insufferable, yet still armed and aglow with the knowledge of their schooldays.

Jake Wood of Eastenders fame returns to the role of Lauren’s builder boyfriend Ben, after winning a well-deserved WhatsOnStage award last year, and it’s a strong, disruptive performance.

Sound Design (Ian Dickinson) is an appropriately unnerving rhythm of screeches, screams and gasps.

Intervals of Massive Attack’s enduringly sexy Angel amplifies the desire and fear on stage – the hazy, hypnotising bassline both threatening and seductive.

Cheryl Cole and Eastenders’ Jake Wood star in ghostly, award-winning West End thriller ( Helen Murray) (Image: Helen Murray)

Much like the dialogue, the play’s soundtrack feels uncomfortable – as it should – multiplying the weirdness and emotional confusion of the play.

Given he’s the creator and host of BBC Radio 4’s The Battersea Poltergeist, it’s no surprise that playwright Robins has captured the entertainment zeitgeist with 2:22, giving us cinematic jumps and starts and the interrogative discussion of a podcast.

The real surprise though – who would have thought that ghost stories could be character driven?

2:22 A Ghost Story is running at The Lyric Theatre until 23 April 2023 and you can get your tickets via the 2:22 A Ghost Story website.

Writer: Danny Robins

Director: Matthew Dunster

Producer: Runaway Entertainment