A gowned diva and two guitarists enter a bare theatre. The bravura opening scene establishes that we are in 18th century Peru and promises much. Passion bubbles beneath the surface. A handkerchief becomes a mantilla then a nursing shawl as a background silhouette tantalises.

The Bridge of San Luis Rey

Director Chris Drummond takes us on a musical and theatrical journey all the way over a precipice, aided by Designer Jonathan Oxlade’s simple theatre set and Gavin Norris’ crisp and atmospheric lighting.

Paul Capsis as the Perichole inhabits a role that could have been written by Wilder just for him. The complexities of the relationships between the characters and the different accents utilised, provide something of a challenge for us as we struggle at times to see the end of one and beginning of another. The scenes where Capsis does not read from the notebook are captivating and reveal every brilliant thing about the consummate performer, but when in use, the narrator’s...