Sophie Lyndon, Laura Prince, Claire Takami-Siljedahl, Dan Sanderson, Louisa Keight and Uma RamachandranJohannes Hjorth

As explained in the prologue, "when we tell you his story, you should know it could never be exactly what happened. But we're going to put it together and sell it to you as the truth." To present these controversial events as pure truth requires a performance of high energy and great conviction and, fortunately, this week’s Corpus Playroom main show has these qualities in bucket loads. Despite some initial imperfections and ambiguities, Enron unleashes a masterful whirlwind of chaos, deception and hilarity.

Enron recounts the true story of the American energy company and how it fell into $30 billion of debt, duping the world into thinking that they were billionaires. Dan Sanderson in the role of Jeff Skilling gives a solid performance and captures the CEO’s gradual demise and loss of control well. Matt Gurtler as Andy Fastow injects the production with light-hearted humour and his interactions with audience members and velociraptors alike are most certainly amusing. Comic relief is equally prominent among the ensemble, with Louisa Keight’s cutting portrayal of the disillusioned accountant being a noteworthy highlight.

The true success of this production lies, however, not in individual performances but in its overarching abundance of energy. Each member of the cast is bursting with enthusiasm, while the intimate space of the Corpus Playroom is used to its full extent to capture a sense of intense drive and motivation. On numerous occasions, the stage buzzes with an electric atmosphere: as the office enjoys their New Year’s Eve party, as the workers hurry about buying and selling shares on the stock markets and as Andy Fastow runs frantically on an imaginary treadmill. The commendable energy levels rarely falter, propelling the production along with remarkable momentum.

This dynamism is heightened by the effective and stylish use of projections. Featuring archive footage and news bulletins, these effects are dotted throughout the production, with the clips timed to perfection and seamlessly incorporated into the narrative. For instance, as cracks finally start to appear in Skilling’s schemes, it is excellent to see this demise physically depicted around the CEO, with his falling stocks overlapping the jagged white lines of the Enron logo. These technical intricacies compliment an otherwise simplistic office layout. Additionally, the red and green lighting overlay is creative and establishes a welcome contrast to the sterility of the office layout. However, although seemingly associated to Andy Fastow’s character, the exact location of this colourful setting remains unclear.

Despite the impressive energy, the fast-paced nature of the performance unfortunately gives way to occasional moments of erratic confusion. In earlier scenes, longer pieces of dialogue seem rushed and lose their clarity. The script is rich in financial and business nuances and the audience is not afforded ample time to digest these dense concepts. Likewise, even though the mood does recreate that of a bustling workspace, the frenzied atmosphere of the first scene renders comprehension and character identification difficult. With several conversations taking places simultaneously and lively background music intruding on their discussions, the audience is bombarded with multiple situations and their attention is scattered helplessly across the stage. This impedes the initial understanding of certain characters, leaving their identities and motivations ambiguous. These weaker moments are, however, soon dispelled to achieve an overall tight and coherent production.

Enron offers a delightful dissection of one of the most infamous scandals in financial history, intertwining humour with anticipation, deception with excitement, fear with greed, to concoct this high-energy and vibrant performance.

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