The Cabinet of Dr Caligari – at the Arcola










“ ‘Shadows, dreams, they're all around us, they're everywhere!’

“Franzis Gruber, a lowly bureaucrat, lives a neat and ordered life in a sleepy, provincial German town. When a travelling fair arrives, full of clowns, freaks, magicians and sleepwalkers, it drags Franzis into a series of nightmarish murders – spinning dreams into reality, the imagined into truth and order into chaos.

“The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is one of the most influential films of all time: a box office smash in 1920, it came to define cinematic Expressionism and inspire Film Noir. Torn from the screen, simple8 transforms the film into a fast, frenzied fairground sideshow with a ‘pungently evocative and blackly amusing master-class in the art of poor theatre’.” – from the Arcola website

“Thankfully, theatre company Simple8 haven’t tried to replicate the film for the stage. Instead, they’ve taken an essence of the original and crafted it, rather wonderfully, into a kind of mirror image. ... Sebastian Armesto and Dudley Hinton have adapted the original with admirable confidence, bringing out a lightness and humour in the production, while still ensuring the story retains its original sense of confusion and unease. There’s upbeat music and humorous one-liners alongside an inventive use of lighting to create ominous shadows.” – from the Telegraph review.

“The adaptation, by directors Sebastian Armesto and Dudley Hinton, is brash and irreverent, full of witty one-liners and surreal turns of phrase. There are standout performances from Joseph Kloska as Franzis and Christopher Doyle as both somnambulist Cesare and ‘father of the fair’ Hermann, but the entire cast impresses, and they perform a klezmer-inflected live score that complements the tatty penny-gaffe visuals. If there’s such a thing as a ‘Caligari’ purist, this may not be their bag, for everyone else it’s an irresistibly fun interpretation: a haunted accordion of a show that sways and wheezes with its own demented energy.” – from the Time Out review.

Tickets are available from the Arcola website. Seating is unallocated, so please book your own tickets.

I would be grateful if all members can contribute £1 on arrival on the evening (to help defray the approx. £100 per annum that Meetup charges to run a group) – thanks very much in advance.

I plan to stay on for a drink after the performance at the Arcola theatre bar. Please let me know if you'd like to join me.

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  • catherine a.

    Hello Jane - well I got there early as I had to run for a train at Highbury. So I sat down in the foyer with my mag to wait for others to arrive. I looked up several times but finally went on the lookout about 7.50 and there was no one there. So I went down shortly after, knowing that there was no reserved seating. I hope we meet up soon. Catherine

    March 11, 2013

  • catherine a.

    I did attend but did not see the lady with the red scarf so sat in the front row and watched it by myself. It was amusing enough as a distraction but had no real purpose. Shame about missing the drinks after as someone may have been able to explain some of it to me. Mind you the Irishman playing the somnabulist had something about him...

    March 9, 2013

    • Jane

      Was sorry to miss you Catherine - I was in the middle of the foyer from[masked]ish, with David and David - were you about then? I checked my phone as we went into the auditorium but didn't see anything had come through. Hopefully we'll have a chance to meet another time.

      March 10, 2013

  • Annette M.

    Hya all. Im so sorry i wont be able to come tonight. I was on their website booking and then it all went funny so i logged back on again and found that it was SOLD OUT!! Ive just called the Box Office who've confirmed it. Gutted! I live too far away (Charlton) to attempt a trek for returns either.
    I'll go one evening next week.
    Hope to meet up with you soon.

    March 8, 2013

  • David

    Hi Elisa

    Tickets are £17 (unless you can claim a concession). You should buy direct from the Arcola website as above. The seating is all unreserved - so you can collect your ticket from the theatre on Friday evening - and we can all sit together. I think this theatre only has seats for 80 people, so very small, and you are likely to be in the front two rows. Meet us in the very small theatre bar, before the performance

    March 7, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    how much are the tickets?
    so many thanks!

    March 7, 2013

    • Jane

      £17 full price; £12 concession - hope you can join us

      March 7, 2013

  • nana

    ticket booked & drinks afterwards sounds good! thanks

    March 4, 2013

  • Isa


    March 2, 2013

  • Egor

    seen it a few times

    February 27, 2013

  • Anita

    Just booked my ticket Jane. I'd up for drinks after rather than dinner this time :)

    February 26, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hi, do we have to book individually or will you make a group booking?

    February 26, 2013

    • Jane

      Hi - the seating is unallocated, so there's no need to do a group booking - please book your own seats.

      February 26, 2013

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