Review: Outcry Theatre's LET THE RIGHT ONE IN creates tension among audiences.

Let the Right One In

By Jack Thorne
Based on the Novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist
Director/Choreographer: Becca Johnson-Spinos
Produced by Outcry Theatre

Outside, on this August evening in North Texas, it’s hot and humid – impossible not to break a sweat just walking from your car to the closest building. But inside the Addison Theatre Center, it’s the dead of winter – snow (well, confetti) all over the ground and blue hued lights evoke a wintery escape inside the building where Outcry Theatre is performing the mystifying tale of Let the Right One In

Before the performance begins, actors are already setting the mood as they cross the stage one by one, bundled up against the cold – some checking their watches or pockets, others looking over their shoulders. What could they be looking for? What are they after? Or who is after them? Ominous sounds of howling wolves and squawking birds accentuate the scene (sound design by Becca and Jason Johnson-Spinos). The set (designed by Cory Garrett) is comprised of several columns painted to look like birch trees in winter, with a conglomeration of ladders, platforms, and monkey bars up center – a fantastic configuration that transports the audience everywhere from up in the treetops, to a front door, to a swimming pool, and many places in between. Other set pieces – lockers and a bench, bed, couch, trunk, a candy shop counter – all move in and out as needed and lights (designed by Courtney Amaro) transition us from one scene to the next without need of blackouts. 

This is the tale of two unlikely neighbors – Oskar (Dylan Weand) and Eli (Charli Henn) – who meet in the woods one night after Oskar’s Mom (Audrey Medrano) warns him not to go beyond their courtyard. There’s a murderer at large. Bodies, drained of their blood, keep turning up in the woods. Oskar battles enough demons in his everyday life and doesn’t seem to be afraid of anything that goes bump in the night. He’s regularly beaten and harassed by school bullies Jonny & Micke (played with great depth by Violet Forbes and Brady Beckley, respectively). When he finds a spritely, mysterious person perched up in a tree, his curiosity is piqued – even if he’s repeatedly told by Eli that they can’t be friends. Eli isn’t like anyone he’s met before. Henn’s Eli moves in animalistic ways across the stage, her left hand almost always tensed in a claw, her speech patterns are quirky and she “sounds like an old person,” according to Oskar

The production is sprinkled liberally with beautiful dance numbers. While everyone was well choreographed, Weand and Henn are the definite stand outs – they move so fluidly, both independently and in sync with one another. It’s no surprise to see in the program that they both assisted with the choreography. In addition to dance – sometimes in tandem with it – there is also a lot of fighting. My hat’s off to fight consultant Adam Kullman – the physicality of this performance is not something you often see in such an intimate setting. It’s very clear there was a lot of focus on safety and timing – so many (appeared) close calls leave the audience gasping in shock. And the blood special effects by Isa Flores are really something to behold! 

Get your tickets ASAP for the final two performances – Outcry Theatre’s Let the Right One In only runs through August 13th.  Tickets can be purchased at 

Support local theater!

Sara Jones

Audience Rating: PG-13 (language and violence)

Run Time: 2hr 30 min (including one 15 min intermission)

Accessible Seating: Available 

Hearing Devices: Not available

Sensory Friendly Performance: Not available

ASL Performance: Not available

Production Sound Level: Comfortable  volume

Noises or Visuals to Prepare For: Shouting, screaming, violence, language, blood