Halloween maybe over but there are still spooky shenanigans to enjoy at Brighton’s Emporium theatre over the next few nights. “UNWHOLESOME THINGS” an immersive re-telling of two Edwardian ghost stories with a contemporary twist is on Thursday 6th, Friday 7th and Saturday 8th November at 8pm.
‘Pleasingly atmospheric’ rehearsed readings of two eerie tales from the pen of celebrated master of the Edwardian short story, William Wymark Jacobs.
Two cautionary supernatural ‘curtain raisers’ which promise to delight and enthrall:
The Monkey’s Paw – Jacobs’ signature classic which still, after a hundred years, retains moments of genuine terror.
The Ghost of Jerry Bundler – a charming tale of unease (adapted from Jacob’s original story) that enjoyed its first stage appearance in 1899.
At the turn of the Twentieth Century, curtain raisers were performed in theatres as a somewhat mundane first course, or prelude to the main event. These neatly compact vignettes were designed to whet the appetite before the more substantial theatrical fayre was served up.
However, with the first performance of Jacob’s The Monkey’s Paw in October 1902 everything changed. The curtain raiser was now arresting and appealing, indeed terrifying, in itself. Audiences began to flock and enjoy this particular curtain raiser, frequently leaving before the principal drama.
The cult of ‘The Paw’ had begun.
In the years since it has enjoyed countless re-imaginings including a Hitchcock rewrite for TV and, most notably of all, the creation of a (now lost) film in 1933 which was directed by Merian C. Cooper in the very same year as his iconic original King Kong, a landmark in the cinema of Horror.
Whilst carefully handling these period plays with due respect (as one might clutch a precious jewel or family heirloom) Strange Beast relish the opportunity to carefully set them in an exciting contemporary frame, introducing an immersive audio soundscape and intriguing visuals specially constructed for the event. Like a Film Archivist restoring precious, faded footage to its original brilliant colour, Strange Beast re-discover these peculiar plays of unease in an imaginative and distinctly memorable way.
The night includes a special contribution has been recorded for the event by the wondrous Fenella Fielding.
Strange Beast last appeared in Brighton with a successful string of installatory performances at the Booth Museum of Natural History (And No Birds Sing – Brighton Fringe 2012).
“Strange Beast.. send shivers down my spine… they are ones to look out for.” - What’s on the Fringe
88 London Road, Brighton BN1 4JF