The Crucible review, Scottish Ballet, Edinburgh International Festival: a powerful portrait of hysteria that’s anything but a trial

The Crucible, Scottish Ballet
The Crucible, Scottish Ballet

“I’ll tell you what’s walking Salem – vengeance is walking Salem.”

So says John Proctor, doomed hero of The Crucible. It’s the line that most succinctly sums up what is really happening in Arthur Miller’s eternally relevant 1953 play (set amid the hysteria of the 1692 witch trials in Salem, Massachusetts, but famously an allegory of the tyranny of the mid-20th-century McCarthyite “witch hunts”). And it is also a line that seems to hang invisibly in the air from the very start of choreographer Helen Pickett’s confident new adaptation of the play for Scottish Ballet, here getting its world premiere at the Edinburgh International Festival.

It launches with an episode that is not in the play, but...

To continue reading this article

Start a 30-day free trial for unlimited access to Premium articles

  • Unlimited access to Premium articles 
  • Subscriber-only events and experiences
  • Cancel any time

Free for 30 days

then only £2 per week

Save 25% with an annual subscription

Just £75 per year


Register for free and access one Premium article per week

Only subscribers have unlimited access to Premium articles.
Register for free to continue reading this article
Or unlock all Premium articles.
Free for 30 days, then just £1 per week