Dr Faustus

Posted by Laurence Green

Laurence Green reviews Maria Aberg’s updated version of Christopher Marlowe’s, Doctor Faustus.


The RSC’s production in its current repertoire – Maria Aberg’s updated version of Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus (Barbican Theatre) is a major disappointment. The trouble here is that scary stuff in which Faustus sells his soul to the devil and ends up being dragged into the gates of hell is mixed with endless unfunny farcical scenes involving, low-life characters and indeed Faustus himself is engaged in no end of tedious practical jokes and cross-talk routines. Sandy Grierson and Oliver Ryan are rather lackluster as Faustus and Mephistopheles. In fact the only time the play really bursts into life is during the seven deadly sins sequence which is presented as a decadent cabaret.

Dr Faustus

Playing at the Barbican Theatre until 1 October 2016

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