The latest production by the Abbey Theatre Club is a spine-tingling ghost story dealing with the darker side of love and genius.
The Haunting of Julia Lukin, by Alan Ayckbourn, is the tale of three men coming to terms with their relationships with and the death of young musical prodigy Julia Lukin who died under mysterious circumstances.
Mark Masson is on good form as her over-bearing, interfering and obviously still grieving father Joe, who 12 years on has built a shrine to her memory, and in his quest for answers to her death awakens something supernatural.
Ex-boyfriend Andy (James Robb) provides a lot of the tension, clashing with the other two characters, his scepticism driving him close to the edge until he is forced to confront his role in previous events.
James Callachan plays the mysterious Mr Chase who meets the two men at the museum to Julia that Joe has founded. His fast-talking ‘psychic’ is full of nervous energy and secrets.
All three actors really get to grips with their characters and there is a lot of pent-up energy in the room as the trio spar non-stop for the whole play.
All of the action takes place in one sparse room, the living quarters of the very odd Julia which has been converted into a showpiece complete with audio commentary provided by Brenda Reid, Philip Pennant Jones and Heather Reid.
The spooky goings on are well done, and we would not wish to spoil any of, save to say there are several genuine jump-out- your-seat moments.
Producer Anne Smith made the right choice not only in her cast, but in choosing to run the show as it was originally intended as one continuous act without an interval. The fact that no one got up to go to the toilet is probably a rather crude, but accurate indicator that the audience was riveted to the action and the tension was nigh-unbreakable.
The show continues tonight (Friday) and tomorrow at the Abbey Theatre, West Abbot Street. For tickets call VisitScotland on 01241 872609 or visit www.theabbeytheatre.org