Saint Joan

Wed 12th – Sat 15th November 2014


Megan Dunne

at 09:56 on 13th Nov 2014



Saint Joan was very good, but it could have been excellent. The three core tenents of the play that wowed me were Hannah Sands as Joan, Ed Eustace as the Archbishop and Warwick, and the unique inclusion of rap and sound bites in the intervals between scenes. However, I felt that if the play had reached a little farther and incorporated the music slightly more, it could have been outstanding. One of the most impressive scenes was at the very start, where Joan’s helpers/condemners stand and repeat their most important lines. What thrilled me about this scene was the screaming sounds as Joan clutched her head in frustration and agony – I thought this was the way in which Joan’s ‘voices’ would reach her throughout the play and thought it was a good twist on the legend, but unfortunately the performance didn’t go in that direction. Ed Eustace is physically and technically perfect as the Archbishop; he is a commanding presence on the stage and his voice booms threateningly at exactly the right time. Hannah Sands as Joan is absolutely perfect. Her Joan is charismatic, innocent and faithful to a fault – so, basically, Joan of Arc. Personally, I spent most of the scenes in which she was absent wishing to see her again, as she was such a delightful presence on the stage. The slapdash costumes were charming and just modern enough to fit with the particular way in which this performance twisted. Perhaps one of my favourite moments was the incorporation of Kanye West’s ‘No Church in the Wild’, as the lyrics were perfect for the scene it followed (‘What’s a mob to a king/ What’s a king to a god/ What’s a god to a nonbeliever/ Who don’t believe in anything’). James Hancock Evans as the King is perfectly whiney; perfectly bratty. It was a delight to see him rock back and forwards on his throne and squeal at the other characters, odd as it sounds. The only part of the play that did not captivate my attention was the long end scene of the inquisition – there was too much talk of law and religion and not enough Kanye. However, all in all, this play was definitely a positive experience.


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