The Hobbit is such a concentrated dose of imagination that it can be tricky keeping the audience on board
Published Date: 22 March 2010
TURNING JRR Tolkien's novel The Hobbit into a stage show is quite a challenge. Set in a mystical world filled with goblins and elves, the story centres on a perilous quest to reclaim ancestral treasure. It's a tireless rollercoaster of a book, which finds the characters battling against one disagreeable creature after another, from angry trolls to giant spiders. Despite this, the show doesn't skimp on any of Tolkien's creations.
• Gollum (Christopher Llewellyn) threatens Bilbo (Peter Howe). Picture: Complimentary/Dan Wooller
"When we were working on the adaptation we tried to stay within the bounds of the story as much as possible," says director Roy Marsden – who, as a TV actor, is best known as PD James's police commander Adam Dalgliesh. "There's a part in the book where the characters cross the stream by boat, and we decided to use a rope swing instead – but really the majority of it is truthfully told."
Marsden's experience as an actor was useful. "I'm very aware of all the physical problems they have, because it's a very physically demanding show," he says. "And I think the actors appreciate that there is someone out there trying to be a midwife to this show, because as an actor, I know what it feels like to be up there doing it."
The Hobbit is such a concentrated dose of imagination that it can be tricky keeping the audience on board - Scotsman.com News
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