Home CultureTheatre The Great Gatsby: Immersive Theatre

The Great Gatsby: Immersive Theatre

by Emily Healey-Lynham

In Mayfair, London you can stumble upon Jay Gatsby’s mansion, here you can party the night away with all of your favourite characters from the famous novel by F.Scott Fitzgerald. At Gatsby’s Mansion you are greeted by Rosy Rosenthal – one of Mr Gatsby’s “associates” (fabulous accent and welcoming interaction by Harry Pudwell) who takes you in to the party where you can have a drink or two at the colourful and flower infused swanky bar.  The bar is stocked with fun cocktails designed by Gatsby himself (as he told us!) and is a nice location to await the fun of the night’s entertainment.

The Great Gatsby is a 1925 novel by American writer F. Scott Fitzgerald. Set in the Jazz Age on Long Island, near New York City, the novel depicts first-person narrator Nick Carraway’s interactions with mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby and Gatsby’s obsession to reunite with his former lover, Daisy Buchanan.

At the immersive experience you get to see the classic book brought to life but in a new and thrilling way as the events unfold unlike the story you may have read as there are hundreds of possibilities you can see as the pages come to life before your eyes as you are truly thrown into the action.

We supped our 1920s Bees Knees cocktail and Myrtle Wilson wonderfully betrayed by Aminita Francis came over to ask if we knew Gatsby and talked to us about her life, her husband George and her ambitions to be a singer.  Other characters rotated around the space and spoke with audience members and then the room fell silent and the loud booming voice of Nick Carraway (Hugh Stubbins) introduced us to the tale that was about to unfold.  Hugh Stubbins really makes you feel like the pages of the book are starting to turn as the show begins.

Before we knew it, we were in a room with Nick and Tom Buchanan (Alex Wingfield) talking about their old Yale days.  It was like we were all old friends at a party having a drink and talking about life!  Bursting into the room was Tom’s secret lover Myrtle and we were told how they met and we had to promise to keep it a secret from Tom’s wife Daisy.  While these intimate scenes are playing, noise from the main area seeps through the walls of each room, which is a genius idea and has a significant effect on the atmosphere in your little group.

We spent time with Jordan (Jess Hern) who plays the role with pizzazz and it’s fantastic how all the cast remember individuals, return to them, and pick up conversations where they left off, really giving you that feel of being at a legendary Gatsby party!

Heading back into the main room of the party after meeting Jordan we were witness to dancing and booze flowing at the legendary party with Jay Gatsby (Greg Fossard) entertaining his guests and seeing his unrequited love for Daisy (Ivy Corbin) and his plan to have a secret tea with her. The tea preparation scene was funny with 3 audience members helping George Wilson (Steve McCourt) get the area ready.

A small intermission takes place and the bar reopens for more bootleg cocktails and a chance to talk over what you have seen and heard!  The actors still mingle and work the room and people sneak off on secret adventures!  We spent some more time with Myrtle who told us she was moving away with Tom to start a new life, you really felt like you were rooting for her to have what she deserved.

The story then takes a darker turn as Tom argues with Gatsby about his wealth and how he made his fortune from bootleg booze and other lies he has told.  The argument continues and Gatsby tells Tom that Daisy is in love with him the group then leave and tragedy strikes.

We were escorted by Gatsby in a rush to a room that was designed to look like a dressing room and told to not leave Daisy’s side. Daisy was distraught and pacing back and forth and I wanted to comfort her as it felt like I was watching a friend have a melt down!  Kudos to Ivy Corbin who played the personal scene really well, I can’t spoil the plot but we were asked by Daisy’s husband; Tom to lie and as we re-entered the main party area all eyes were on us and it felt strangely awkward and guilty to not be sharing what we knew!

The direction by Alexander Wright is unique and works well as the experience is not like the usual theatre event and the space the show takes place in with design by Casey Jay Andrews transports you to the 1920s. The realistic costumes by Rachel Sampley are full of splendour from Gatsby’s stand out pink suit to Jordan’s sequin and feathered flapper outfit.  Holly Beasley-Garrigan (choreographer) gifts the audience with stellar dance numbers and it’s fun to take part in the Charleston and sing along with the cast! 

The production is full of hot jazz, bootleg liquor and intimate encounters, from big set piece dance routines, to secret meetings and snatched moments, no audience experience will ever be the same at Gatsby’s Mansion.

Be a good old sport and book a ticket today online


  • Emily Healey-Lynham

    Emily has been involved in the media industry for well over 10 years from working on film sets to journalism and PR. Emily is a strategic, energetic Editor who has been with Bespoke since the start heading up the Culture department. Being a fan of all art forms from the theatre to films, literature to exhibitions Emily is usually found in the stalls of a theatre telling you where the cast have been seen before without looking in the programme or fact finding in an art gallery, failing that she will be sipping champagne at the bar regaling stories of "glory days" of the West End!

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