Writer: Stuart Hazeldine
Adaptors: Craig Hepworth, Richard Allen and Stuart Reeve
Director: Craig Hepworth and Richard Allen
Reviewer: Tracey Lowe
The Public Reviews Rating:
Exam is based on a criminally underrated British film from 2009. It tells the story of eight candidates sitting an exam for a high-profile job in a company that is developing a cure for a deadly virus that is sweeping the country. The candidates are given a set of strict instructions by an invigilator, and given 80 minutes to complete the test. It is only when they find they have each been given a blank piece of paper that they realise that this is no simple exam.
It’s a great premise, and the single location of the film lends itself well to a stage adaptation. With little to distract from the story itself, it is important the characters are engaging. David Degiorgio is convincing as narcissistic Candidate 2, but comes across as more annoying than genuinely evil. The audience were willing the other candidates to stand up to him. Haydn Holden does a great job of gradually revealing the true intentions of his character, and is quite unsettling. The entire cast literally threw themselves into their performances, propelling around the stage with little regard for their own safety.
There were little touches that added a great deal to the performance, such as use of music and sound effects, and very clever parts involving lighting. The small space complemented the claustrophobic atmosphere.
The ending of the play was slightly different from that of the film. Additions were made that were not really necessary and distracted from the story of the Candidates. However, this was a mostly successful adaptation of a very interesting, modern story.
Reviewed on 8th September 2012Exam – The Three Minute Theate, Manchester,
Tags: Adaptation, Craig Hepworth, David Degiorgio, Drama, Exam, Fringe, fringe theatre, Haydn Holden, Manchester, Richard Allen, Stuart Hazeldine, Stuart Reeve, Theatre, Three Minute Theatre, Thriller