Lucy Prebble’s ‘coke-fuelled fever dream’ is taking the ADC by storm
Following the real-life story of the fall of one of the top companies in the world, we caught up with Enron’s director Neve Kennedy to find out how they are bringing “one of the most shocking examples of modern corporate corruption” to life on the stage.
This production allows the audience to delve into a world of “illegal schemes, shadow companies, hidden debt and off-the-book accounting” as we explore the “rapid rise and even more sudden decline” of this Wall Street sweetheart. However, Neve emphasises the show’s undeniable focus on the “real people” behind the “numbers and figures”: this modern-day fable highlights the ultimate power of “love, greed, guilt and regret” that marks the human condition.
The show promises a brilliantly synaesthetic viewing experience, “telling real-life stories through physical theatre, puppetry, visual art and most importantly beautiful writing.” With staging and performance at the heart of the inspiration behind this production, Neve comments on the fact that Enron “is absolutely written to be performed and not just read”, with her favourite moment encapsulated in the thrilling closing lines of the play: “once you see Owen Igiehon perform his final monologue you will know exactly what I mean.”
Alongside a “truly mind-blowing cast performance” and Prebble’s cutting analysis of “the real fatal flaws of humanity and where we end up when we succumb to our natural desire for power”, the show provides a fantastical conglomeration of the bizarre and immersive additions of “raptors, ventriloquism, live cello music, charcoal, and shredders.”
Its balance of handling serious and thought-provoking ideologies of the rich combined with such a lovingly crafted stage production offers a unique experience of capitalism that would shake Karl Marx to his core.
A pithy takeaway from the multi-billion-dollar company’s tragic end and how not to repeat it is offered: “You don’t want another Enron? Here’s your law: If a company can’t explain, in one sentence, what it does… it’s illegal”. Or simply put in the words of publicity designer Alicia Powell, “don’t commit fraud.”
But behind these seemingly straightforward ideals to uphold, we truly discover “the dangers of pushing self-indulgence and greed to its limits and what happens when the money becomes more important than the people making it.”
Neve promises something for everyone: “If you love theatre, economics, Wolf of Wall Street, Margin Call, The Big Short and dare I say it… dinosaurs, you’ll most definitely love Enron.” With such an exciting lineup, everyone should come to see this show; it just makes cents (ka-ching!).
Enron is showing on the 10th – 14th of May at 7:45 pm at the ADC Theatre. Book your tickets here.
Feature image credit: Alicia Powell, Neve Kennedy and Erin Visaya-Neville