REVIEW: The Nightmare Room – Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts


A tense and gripping play that leaves its viewers guessing from start to finish, The Nightmare Room is a visually striking tour de force.

Nightmare Room posterThe entire play takes place in a stark, white room, with nothing but a table and two chairs. We are thrown straight into the action, as Helen wakes up blindfolded and tied to a chair by her best friend Catherine. Why? We quickly find out that Helen has been having an affair with Catherine’s husband, and that Catherine has a sinister plot for revenge. 

Through a series of cleverly executed flashbacks, we begin to get a sense of the dynamic between the two friends, and learn the circumstances under which Catherine met her husband. 

Angie Smith (Helen) and Sarah Wynne Kordas (Catherine)

A two-woman show, the play’s success relies heavily on the strength of its actors. As a tug-of-war ensues, the balance of power between the two women shifts seamlessly; at no time does the dialogue feel clunky or forced, and we, the audience, are kept guessing throughout. 

While both actors are terrific, special mention must go to Sarah Wynne Kordas, who plays Catherine with a captivating blend of childlike vulnerability, calculating coldness, and unhinged rage. 

With twists and turns, and a conclusion that will leave you breathless, this is a show not to be missed if you’re fan of tense thrillers that keep you guessing until the very end.

Our rating:

Five stars! Nail-biting and unmissable. 


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