The only worker who cements a friendship with Lennie and George is Candy (Lee Ravitz) who offers them $350 towards their farm dream, as long as he could join them with his faithful dog. The dog is portrayed in puppet form, worked by puppeteer Jake Benson. The dog, of senior years is a faithful companion to Candy, however the other workers are not so fond of him and his smell so take matters in to their own hands to end his life. Puppet director, designer and maker Michael Crouch really does a wonderful job with the dog, encapsulating his scrawny, flea-bitten form. Coupled with the way he is lead around the stage by Benson, the dog is very much lifelike.
There is a lot to take in during act 1 and I did feel that some of the scenes could have been slightly condensed. The sound from some of the performers fell flat a few times for me too, missing words which felt integral to the story.
The pace of the story picks up during act 2 and due to another show of strength from Lennie, Curley’s wife (Maddy Hill) finds herself being killed. Obviously, the rest of the workers realise who was to blame and disappear off on a man hunt with Curley being the instigator. George realises what he has to do and I’m sure it’s no spoiler to say that he is faced with ending Lennie’s life for his own protection. This scene is extremely powerful between the pair and closes the show to dramatic effect.